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SEC Presents: Big Show, Fall 2015

Monday, September 14th, 2015

Hannibal Buress Avoiding Eye Contact

Hannibal Buress is performing at SEC Big Show 2015. Happy Monday.

When: October 2nd, Time TBD

Where: Williamson Sports Center, Skidmore College

Will I Actually Have to Spend Money: $5

Every fall semester, SEC hosts ‘Big Show’ in our friendly neighborhood gymnasium (apparently you can watch sport games there too). Big Show is always one of the grander, drunker, and more expensive events on campus, so everyone bitches and moans when it’s not what they want. The last several years have been dominated by music: Chance the Rapper, Action Bronson and Danny Brown, and Mayer Hawthorne were the big performers of the past three years. This fall, SEC is flipping the script and giving us comedy. Ha ha!

The headliner of this year’s Big Show will be Hannibal Buress, whose most recent projects include Broad City, 30 Rock, The Eric Andre Show, and Saturday Night Live for a hot second. In addition, he also had a hell of a standup set where he famously commented on Bill Cosby’s recent infamy. Here he is singing while dressed as Morpheus.

Opening for Buress will be a comedy act that is currently TBD.

Just out of pure curiosity, let us know what you think. We have our opinions over here at Skid Unofficial, but the campus’ are much more important. Please express your pleasure or distaste for SEC – we love your snarky critiques of Campus institutions.

Audience Note: Contrary to what happened at Tig Notaro’s standup set at last year’s ComFest, if a comedian calls you out during a performance it is NOT an invitation to plug your SoundCloud, LinkedIn, or Twitter handle. Spare us all the toe-curling cringe.

Los Elk Release ‘Rituals’

Tuesday, February 24th, 2015

Moments like this don’t actually happen in real life.

Throw up your antlers and bust out those credit cards, folks, because Los Elk‘s new EP, Rituals, has hit the world wide web for streaming.

Featuring three new tracks–two in their usual yet tight-as-ever upbeat sound, and one slower jam that just shreds at the end–the dancey-rock quartet shows that their time on the road and in the studio has done them well. The production is sleeker than ever, and the songs showcase an impressive amount of musical complexity that separates the band from most artists that produce material this infectious.

For fans of the band’s previous efforts (which you probably are), you’ll find plenty to love in the 10 minutes that this release spans. And if you’re not a fan, well, I have to go to a class that starts in two minutes, so I really can’t think of anything clever to balance that out.

Check out an acoustic version of the “Neighbors,” the EP’s second track, below. And check out the new release–which can be downloaded for a modest $3–on the band’s Bandcamp.

Los Elk to Release New EP

Wednesday, February 4th, 2015

Album Art by Jake LiBassi.

Los Elk have just announced the released date for their upcoming EP, Rituals, which is slated to drop on February 24th. It’s been over a year since the band dropped the second installment in their (assumedly) two-part EP series, but the band has been incredibly active touring near and far for the past year–and it’s safe to assume they made their return to the studio tighter than ever.

If you’re unfamiliar with the band and their material (chyeah right), check out their discography on their Bandcamp and be sure to add to their bounty of “likes” on their Facebook page. And, of course, check back later this month to hear what I’m sure will be another solid release from the indie-pop darlings of the Skidmore music scene.

Lively Lucy’s Presents: Bobmore Dylanmania (11/20)

Tuesday, November 18th, 2014

Jesse Hardman ’15

Are you totally over The Beatles? Would you take Blood on the Tracks over that overrated and derivative piece of trash Sgt. Pepper’s anyway? Is the intimate and cozy feel of Falstaff’s more appealing to you than the impersonal expansiveness of the Ladd Concert Hall? Do you think Paul McCartney talks funny?

If any/all of these are the case, well, chill out. You can like The Beatles and Bob Dylan, because both are seminal cultural figures and played large roles in developing music as we know it today. And you can still go to Beatlemore this weekend. But Bobby isn’t the focal point of the school’s biggest annual event, so the old reliables Lively Lucy’s are giving him a major shout-out this Thursday, 11/20, with Bobmore Dylanmania.

The evening will consist of some folks playing short sets of their favorite one to three Bob Dylan songs. I sure hope someone performs this seasonal gem. That’s pretty much all there is to it. Should be fucking awesome. Lively Lucy’s always finds cool ways to switch things up every now and then, so be sure and swing by Falstaff’s this Thursday at 8:00pm and support them and anyone performing.

Eskimo Sister Releases Debut Single “OK”

Monday, November 17th, 2014

Is that a cucumber?

Twee-Pop/Lo-Fi band Eskimo Sister have finally graced us with a recording, so swing on over to their Bandcamp and give a listen to “OK.” This is a hot one, as it features the line: “i cut myself shaving and it was the best thing to happen all week,” so hop on that name-your-price download right now.

Eskimo Sister formed at the beginning of this semester. It addition to their debut performance at the student band showcase back September, they saddened up the rickety Falstaff’s stage just the other week when they opened for Kitten Forever. The band features Brandon Dyer ’15 (featured bassist for Free Cake for Every Creature), Johnny Murphy ’15 (formerly of Yo Soy Milk, presently of Johnny Murphy), Giulia Morrone ’15, and Eric Lemaire ’15.

Concerning their future, the band wrote on their Facebook:

uhh I guess we’ll be sporadically recording songs whenever we feel like it and releasing them whenever they sound good. we don’t know what the album will be called yet but there’s going to be one. unless we break up, which is entirely possible. actually, never mind, we’re probably not going to release any more music.

 

Sounds promising to me. They also tweet, and they don’t suck at it. Like them on Facebook and keep an eye out for future material/performances/amusing status updates.

Los Elk to Play 2014 CBGB Festival

Thursday, October 9th, 2014
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Why, yes: that IS an anarchy symbol painted on a train.

Skidmore’s very own indie-pop professors and Fun Day regulars Los Elk have been announced as part of the lineup for the 3rd annual CBGB Music & Film Festival. If you read the acronym “CBGB” and only think of the t-shirts worn by that one kid in high school who had “KURT COBAIN’S #1 FAN” as his name on Myspace, then read this and learn something about a huge part of American music history.

The CBGB festival made its debut in 2012, with headliners like Cloud Nothings, War on Drugs, and The Hold Steady’s Craig Finn, and featured more than 300 bands in the lineup—in addition to screenings of more than two dozen rock ‘n’ roll related films. The following year marked a couple changes in the festival: it was moved from July to October, it expanded from three days to five days, and it increased its lineup to about 500 bands.

This year, running from October 8-12, will be more of the same, with one major change: the producers have made substantial cuts to the lineup, limiting the total to a mere 50 bands. Allan Kozinn of nytimes.com reports that “The organizers, saying that they wanted to focus on quality rather than quantity this year, have scaled back the number of bands and solo performers to about 50.” Granted, the economy is also still in shambles, so that might have something to do with it as well.

Still, the fact that our very own Los Elk made the cut with the 90% decrease (shout out to skillsyouneed.com) is fucking huge, and we/they should be super stoked and proud. They’ll be joining an eclectic lineup of performers, from Jane’s Addiction to We Are Scientists to Macy Gray (of Spiderman fame).

Seeing all the other band photos made me realize that these boys really need to step up their game in this department.

Alright, boys, if you’re going to be landing gigs at sweet festival, you really oughta step up your band photo game.

Los Elk will be performing at Pianos on Saturday, October,11 at 10:00pm, right before Skidmore’s newest pals, The Rooks. If you’re interested in attending the show, I’m sure you’ll have no trouble finding a couple friends to head down to the city with and throw up your antlers to support our boys.

Okay, that last sentence felt really stupid to type. Besides, who are you kidding: you’re seeing Chance the Fucking Rapper on Saturday. Either way, congratulations to the band for landing a sweet gig. Yet another thing to reinforce that they’ve certainly come a long way from covering that one song by The Killers from Guitar Hero 3.

Harrison Lipton Debuts “Think Twice”

Sunday, October 5th, 2014

 

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I already feel gloomy.


If you listened to the new track from singer/composer Harrison Lipton ’15 and weren’t the slightest bit disappointed that it wasn’t a cover of the brilliant Eve 6 anthem of possessiveness, you’re probably not alone. (Seriously, you can admit it without shame. 2003 was a great year.) But don’t let that stop you from giving the track (which is currently streaming on CMJ) a listen, because this is a strong debut that exhibits excellent songwriting and crisp production–slightly reminiscent of PBR&B acts like Active Child, James Blake, and How to Dress Well. Kind of. But not exactly. RIYL’s are weird and counter-intuitive.

You might have witnessed Lipton’s striking talent as a vocalist and performer at Drastic Measures jams, but “Think Twice” shows that Lipton has a lot going for him as a solo artist as well. While Lipton showcases his impressive capabilities as a producer and songwriter, his hauntingly beautiful croon–recently featured in a new track from Mister Lies–is the real standout, delicately soaring above minimalistic yet lush instrumentation and pegging Lipton as a solo artist worth keeping your eye on for future work.

Though this is currently Lipton’s only track, you can check him out on both Bandcamp and Soundcloud.

Adam Tinkle Presents: “A Mess of Things”

Wednesday, September 24th, 2014
Fucking art

Fucking art.

Every once in a while you come across some random event that sounds strangely awesome, even though you have no clue what it is exactly. Enter Adam Tinkle’s A Mess of Things, “an illuminated radio play about family, memory, and having too much stuff” to be performed tomorrow (Thursday, 9/25) in Zankel.

In addition to doing just about everything, Adam Tinkle is an artist, performer, scholar, and education in apparently all things evocative of human emotion. A Mess of Things originally debuted on April 1, 2011 at the Experimental Theater in the Conrad Prebys Music Center, UCSD, La Jolla, CA. It was then performed in June of that year at Hollywood Fringe Festival–where it won Best of Fringe–and it toured the East Coast, being performed at a variety of venues and for a variety of audiences.

A fusion of radio documentary and experimental music theater, A Mess of Things is an award winning hour-long solo performance by Adam Tinkle. It blends audio interviews the composer made with his grandfather together with text, songs, videos and live music into a dense exploration of memory, hoarding and the difficulties of divesting. Rich with sonic detail, A Mess of Things layers voices and images, and moves fluidly between intimate storytelling (think This American Life) and chaotic sonic texture (think Negativland).  A must-see for fans of the Books, Laurie Anderson and Robert Ashley.

If you’re not insanely curious after reading that, I recommend you check out Steven Leigh Morris’s write-up about it in the LA Weekly. It’s at the very bottom of the piece (in the last four paragraphs), where he mentions that the piece contains “that rarest of qualities we seek, in the theater and in life—authenticity.” Where else are you gonna find that on a Thursday night at Skidmore College?

The show, which will be performed in Ladd Hall, starts at 8:00PM. Check out an excerpt from the show below. It should be weird and cool, so be there if you’re into that sort of thing.

Lively Lucy’s & SEC Present: Los Elk & The Rooks

Friday, September 19th, 2014

It wouldn’t be the start of a new semester at Skidmore if we didn’t have a show of our very own indie darlings Los Elk. You may have enjoyed their performance at Putnam Den this past weekend, but this Saturday at 10:00pm, the four-piece outfit will be gracing the Falstaff’s stage and playing the first of what I’m sure will be many on-campus gigs this semester.

Amir and the boys

From right to left: Amir Rivera-Lieberman ’15, some dudes

I’d try to describe their sound in my own words, but their Facebook page features a pretty adequate description, in addition to some good ol’ humble-bragging.

Los Elk features a unique and precise blend of Dance and Indie-Rock to deliver their trademark electrifying and energizing performances. Composed of Amir Rivera-Lieberman, Noah Ross, Hal DeGroat, and Ryan Bondell, Los Elk had their origins in Skidmore College. Forming in the Fall of 2011, the group quickly made a name for themselves with their fun and skillful performances. Since then, Los Elk has played countless shows with more on the way. Stay tuned, because things are only getting better!

While it certainly shouldn’t be excused for a slightly gimmicky title, the band’s latest EP Part II, was a well-produced and well-executed hit among the student body, and the band’s appeal has certainly extended beyond both Skidmore and Saratoga Springs, as they’ve been incredibly active over the summer playing at a variety of venues. And rightly so, because their sound is fucking tight.

Also on the bill for the evening is the NYC-based sextet The Rooks. Branding a blend of soul, R&B, and pop and featuring delicately placed yet lush instrumentation that promises to translate incredibly well live and show what that new sound system at Falstaff’s is really capable of. Listen to and download their new single “Twister” and their 2013 EP Something You Can Take to get a sampling of their work. In the unlikely case that Los Elk doesn’t get you there, these guys certainly will.

Doors are at 9:300pm, show starts promptly at 10:00pm. Swing by and start your weekend in the most classically Skidmore way possible.

Jesse Hardman Debuts New Single; New Album Coming Later This Month

Monday, September 8th, 2014

Folk and blues singer-songwriter Jesse Hardman ’15 has released a new track called “For You I Sing the Blues,” the lead single from his new album Sojourn, which is set for a late September release. This will mark Hardman’s third full-length release following his acoustic folk album For a Love, released in February of this past year.

I'm not a leather kinda guy by any means, but I want that fucking jacket.

I’m not a leather kinda guy by any means, but I want that jacket.

Hardman’s a regular favorite at Lively Lucy’s monthly open mic nights, and he’s garnered plenty of attention after playing a handful of live acoustic sets on campus. If this new track is any indication, however, Hardman seems to be taking his style in a new direction, as he’s traded in his acoustic guitar for a full-band sound and embraced his roots in the blues. Hardman’s unrivaled mastery of the genre is incredibly apparent, yet he’s offered a more contemporary take on it, as the track features a killer groove that will prove impossible not to dance to when Hardman begins playing it live with a full band.

Check out Jesse Hardman on Facebook and keep posted for more updates on what’s shaping up to be another strong full-length effort.