Coachella’s 2015 lineup was just released and other than Florence and the Machine touring for the first time in ages, St. Vincent, and a few bottom ticket acts like Benjamin Booker and Ryn Weaver, I have to say I’m very underwhelmed. I find many of the lower ticket acts are actually the best, i.e. Lykki Li, MØ, etc. Yes, AC/DC is absolutely and undoubtedly incredible and everyone has been hoping for Drake for ages, but listing bands like Alabama Shakes as a second tier headliner and Jack White as the main headliner for Saturday night is a bit disappointing.  Half of these acts just performed at other festivals like Newport Folk Fest, and therefore, the lineup is barely giving us anything new like the Outkast reunion of last year. Musicians like Hozier are wonderful and all, but should they really be considered ‘headliners’ at a renown festival like Coachella. I love many of the acts, but I just find the lineup a bit lackluster. /home/wpcom/public_html/wp-content/blogs.dir/8dc/62563880/files/2015/01/img_1724.png

My Q&A With: Bear Hands!

If you were able to attend this year’s Coachella festival, you may have stumbled across the musical talent of Bear Hands (the band that is, not actual bear hands). The band, which consists of members Dylan Rau, Ted Feldman, Val Loper, and TJ Orscher, incorporate a variety of musical elements into their music, leading to new sounds heard in almost every song. Upon first listen, the captivating and catchy rhythms of the band’s music are not blatantly obvious. It isn’t until you find yourself singing their songs later in the day that you truly realize the underlying magic and beauty. 

Their music is unique and intriguing. Songs such as “Bone Digger” manage to literally dig themselves into one’s head and remain there for the rest of the afternoon. With two EPs and full-length albums under their belt, Bear Hands have created an extensive list of euphonious sounds, falling into various musical genres, and thus appealing to a variety of audiences. Be sure to follow their music, as they have nowhere to go but up. With upcoming tour stops in Europe, I can expect the band will continue to gain notoriety around the world. Members from the band were able to answer a few questions; the answers certainly seem to capture the fun vibe the band exudes.

I’ve read Dylan and Ted attended college together. How do you feel working together for several years in this sense has influenced the way you work together now as a group?


Bear Hands-
Photo From Bear Hands Facebook Page

Well, whenever there’s a disagreement in the band, Dylan and I take out our diplomas and wave them around to remind Val and TJ of our intellectual superiority.  Then after they’ve been silenced, we usually have a round of one-on-one beer pong to decide who is actually right, because college.

How does it feel coming off of a successful Coachella performance? What was that experience like?

It had been a dream of ours for a long time to play that festival, but the fact that we had such a good crowd so early in the afternoon made it truly satisfying, validating.  Really fun.  I highly recommend it.

You are scheduled to play Reading and Leeds in Europe this August. Do you approach European tour stops differently than those in America?

No, we’re not making house remixes of all our songs or anything.

Distraction, your second full-length studio album came out this past February, on which Ted served as the producer. What was it like having these dual roles?

It didn’t feel like dual roles, more just a natural extension of the writing process.  I have a continuing interest in tone, in balanced arrangements, and in keeping the train moving.  I had to be present at all times, which was exhausting, but I prefer it that way.

Bear Hands produces a plethora of sounds including, punk, indie, dance and rock. Is there one particular sound that you think best describes the band?



Listen to “Bone Digger” here

Support Distraction here

Let’s Talk About: CHVRCHES

I have been so enthralled with my music lately, that I have been listening to all these artists and not doing posts about them. Rookie mistake (if I still technically count as a rookie, for today is my 3 month blog-aversary, whoop). Needless to say, this post is lonnnng overdue. I have been jamming (aka embarrassing myself because we all know how good of a dancer I am) to CHVRCHES for quite some time now. Their debut album, The Bones Of What You Believe, came out last September, so I’m sure many of you have already heard of them. If you have, I just want to drive the point home of how awesome they are. If you have never  heard of them, go listen (please)!

So the group CHVRCHES is comprised of three members, Lauren Mayberry, Iain Cook, and Martin Doherty from Scotland. So basically, if I stopped there, you would already know how cool they are because they are from Scotland, but I will continue anyway. They were listed in the top five of BBC’s Sound of 2013 list. Their vibe is electric-pop I would say, although I would much rather say electricy-poppy because it sounds more fun. They are playing at Coachella and floating around the United States and Europe over the next few months, giving them a lot of well deserved exposure. Their album has been making frequent visits to my record player, and I can say with certainty that it will continue to do so. The music they produce is so upbeat and catchy, I just want to dance and laugh and jump around whenever I’m listening to them, in the least psychotic way possible (for that did make me sound a bit insane). Many of you have probably heard The Mother We Share and possibly not realized it was CHVRCHES, but it was. So perfect, you may have heard them and didn’t even know, even more reason to buy their album now and dance around in your room! Hip hip hurray!! Fingers crossed that I will be able to get last minute tickets to a show, if my schedule frees up, I would in a heartbeat! If you search my posts, I know I have posted a few videos of them in the BBC Live Lounge and such. CHVRCHES 5ever! If you like any of the following people and/or have a soul, you will love CHVRCHES: HAIM, Lorde, London Grammar, Puppies (the animal), Music (in general), MØ, etc.

Click here for a fun interview. 

Notable Songs: 

The Mother We Share 

We Sink

Recover (my jam, if you were wondering and/or care at all)


Let’s Talk About: This Year’s Festivals

The festival circuit this year is quite interesting, in my opinion. Coachella’s lineup is the best I’ve seen in several years, brining in acts like Lana Del Rey and Lorde. On the other hand, I find most of the other festivals are lacking in quality. The circling headliners this year seem to generally be Jack Johnson, Outkast, Arcade Fire, Foo Fighters etc. I think these artists are all incredibly talented, but not exactly what I was hoping for. However, it does seem that the lower tear acts this year are the highlights. HAIM, Avicii, Neutral Milk Hotel etc.

Interestingly enough, one of the festivals I think has a good lineup this year is the Big Guava Festival in Tampa, Florida. I had not even heard of this festival until this year, but with the quality acts they’re bringing in, it caught my attention. Vampire Weekend, Foster the People, Girl Talk, HAIM, 21 Pilots, etc.

I guess no one will ever be truly happy with one particular lineup. The festivals that bring in a lot of EDM acts, the attendees complain that there is not enough variety. The ones with more of a vast lineup of acts see complaints about a lack of EDM. I wish it could just be about the experience. Certainly I would like to see a few more of my favorite bands at the festivals I’m going to, but it’s more about the process of listing to the music in a crowd of fellow music lovers for me. One day I will make it to Coachella, though, it’s on my bucket list so obviiiiii it’s has to happen. lol.

Some Things I’m Looking Forward To

So, this is my very first post and my very first blog and, if we’re being honest, I really have little to no idea what I’m doing. I also assume very few people will see this first post. I think it is a good start to discuss a few things I’m looking forward to this year. First, with the recent announcement of the Coachella 2014 Lineup, I am absolutely thrilled about an upcoming busy year of concerts. Two artists/bands I am particularly interested in right now are Lorde and HAIM. I think Lorde’s first album Pure Heroine which followed the release of her EP is absolutely phenomenal. In my eyes, she is a lyrical genius. HAIM’s debut album Days Are Gone  is also incredible. The three sisters are very musically talented and it is obvious they have been playing together for along time. I am thrilled that I will be getting to see both of them perform live this year along with attending two other music festivals (although not Coachella :[ ). 

I am also looking forward at the many movie adaptations of books that are coming out this year. Although the movies are typically never as good as the books, the recent release of the Hunger Games Catching Fire has slightly damaged that idea for me. I especially cannot wait for The Maze Runner, Divergent and Serena. Also, we must not forget the ending of American Horror Story: Coven which is taking place within the next few months (so good).

Finally, I am excited to see the performance of the newest Saturday Night Live player, Sasheer Zamata. The show has been viewed as slowly dying over the past few years, but I think the addition of the many featured players this season has hindered that prediction. I also think the strength of returning cast members Kate McKinnon and Cecily Strong in incessantly increasing.

If you can’t tell, I’m a bit of a nerd, a huge fan of all things movies, tv, books and music and looking forward to the new year.