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The So So Glos tour... the 5 Boroughs!

Sometimes the most brilliant ideas are really really simple ones: NYC punksters The So So Glos announced that, to promote the release of their new EP "Low Back Chain Shift", they will be touring... the 5 NYC boroughs! The news might not be particularly exciting for Brooklynites and Manhattanites, but I bet you some kids are getting quite excited in The Bronx, Queens and Staten Island, places rarely "blessed" by good indie shows. The So So Glos - whose sound is very reminiscent of the more "mature" punk sound of The Clash of the "London Calling" period - will kick off their tour in Staten Island with a show on October 21, and play in Manhattan, Brooklyn, and The Bronx in the 4 following days. Check out the free single from their new EP.

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Firs of Prey Hit Backspace Friday


Tomorrow night's easy-does-it bill at Backspace promises to be an introspective folk-rock fiasco - at least for one of its acts. For to say that Portland's Firs of Prey (the solo project of Andrew Miller) is anything other than a sneakily powerful display would be putting too dull a point on things. Miller's 2008 sophomore offering, Keep the Lions Asleep, won over my nascent Northwest heart with blues-pocked fingerpicking, sultry harmonies and old-timey barbershop dissertations. A sampling of Firs' newer tracks (or older...details on the project are pretty scarce. Case in point: Keeping the Lions Asleep was delivered to me as an unmarked CD-R with no titles) reveal more attention to the not-so-subtle layering of Polyphonic Spree-on-LSD melodies and gorgeous, meandering acoustic guitar.

It's a minimalist triumph, and still one of the more engaging listens I've heard since coming to Portland two years ago. Firs of Prey will play along with the Rose City's self-proclaimed "Rat Pack," the Love Loungers - whose 12-piece soul grooves are quickly causing the systematic smoothing of showgoers' dancin' soles. Also playing will be The Ocean Floor, and popsters Yeah Great Fine. Prepare for ebbs and flows, people.

Show starts at 9 p.m. and costs $5. Proceeds benefit KPSU Radio.

- Ryan J. Prado

?uestlove Performs with Belle and Sebastian & The Roots Back Justin Timberlake and Jimmy Fallon on a Medley through the History of Hip Hop

I’ll be the first to admit that the idea of The Roots leaving Philly to be Jimmy Fallon’s house band, at first, sickened me, but they’ve certainly done the most with their situation. Having proven to be musical sponges, once again, The Roots released their best album in years with How I Got Over. Last night, ?uestlove got his twee on performing with Glaswegians Belle and Sebastian on the title track from their new album Write About Love. While the aired performance on TV frankly left me lukewarm, I did enjoy ?uestlove joining the indie-pop icons on “Piazza, New York Catcher” from 2003’s Dear Catastrophe, which was a web exclusive. Oh yeah - The Roots backing Justin Timberlake and Jimmy Fallon on a medley through the History of Hip Hop actually kicked some serious arse! Check both videos out below while you can. - Q.D. Tran

(“Piazza, New York Catcher”)

("History of Hip Hop Medley")

Next Big Nashville Highlights, Pt. 1: Brooke Waggoner Documentary @ Belcourt

I kicked off this year’s Next Big Nashville by dropping by the Belcourt Theater last night to watch the premier of the new Brooke Waggoner live concert documentary, “And the World Opened Up.” Filmed and produced by Charlie Peacock, the film included live footage and highlights from Brooke’s performance at ArtHouse in Nashville, as well as interviews with the artist and some super cute animation.

The performance at ArtHouse was rather notable because it featured Brooke playing all the hits (i.e. “Go Easy Little Doves,” “Femmes,” “Godwin,” and “Find Her Floods”)—but with a chamber orchestra as a backing band. As if Brooke Waggoner’s music isn’t gorgeous enough, who doesn’t get shhhiiiverrrs from hearing a full string section? Plus, some of Nashville’s other local artists participated in the performance or film footage, such as Natalie Prass and Kelsey Kopecky singing background vocals, Zach Casebolt playing violin, and Kai Welch playing trumpet.

The live interviews with Brooke revealed some very interesting insights into her musical background, including her huge influences by Romantic composers Debussy and Rachmaninov, to her fascination with and belief of Mozart as being the true King of Pop. Audience members also learned that she is very passionate about film scores, and would like to eventually compose music for films herself. Her artistic and songwriting processes were examined, showing how she makes her own orchestral arrangements, where she draws lyrical influences from, and how she began forging her career from age 9.

And may I just mention that she sat right in front of me at the theater? So for some reason, that made the experience even more satisfying for me. I guess because it’s so refreshing to see an artist keepin’ it real…? Anyway, the film was riveting and beautiful on an aesthetic AND musical level, so go here to purchase a copy, or to find out how you can see it.—Erin Manning

NYC Bands you should check out: Guitars - play CMJ on 10.19

Guitars’ first full-length album “Soundtrack to Your Future Nostalgia” could also be named “Soundtrack for Your Future Guru.” Meditation and chanting and bell ringing should be sing-along requirements for this release from the Brooklyn couple (Kenric McDowell and Shanna Hill-McDowell) that often plays live as a quartet. As a matter of fact the album was inspired by a trip in the jungles of Peru` after Shanna was attacked after performing at an art show. It’s heartfelt folk with strummed guitar, haunting vocals, and a toe-tapping echo that stirs from a Himalayan peak of enlightenment.

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