Show Preview: James Vincent McMorrow, Neptune Theatre 11/16

I’m a simple girl. I like some tunes with a guitar, a piano, and some solid vocals. I’m not too fancy, I don’t always appreciate all the extras that go into a record, especially when it takes away from the vocals.

Not with James Vincent McMorrow. It’s a whole new ball game.

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Let’s back up. When I heard James Vincent McMorrow was coming to town this Sunday, I became much, much too excited. An Irish singer-songwriter, McMorrow is one of my favorites. Just releasing his second album Post Tropical last winter in January, McMorrow’s sound is indescribable. Compared to his debut album of 2011, Early in the Morning¸ which had a stereotypical folk sound of straight guitar and voice, Post Tropical mixes different sounds to create this unique, cohesive juxtaposition of R&B, soul, folk, and hip hop. It helps that McMorrow’s surreal songwriting and ability to play practically every instrument is demonstrated within the album.

Mix that with his beautiful falsetto and you’ve got yourself a solid deal of music.

I’m excited for this brilliant show at Neptune Theatre, Sunday, November 16th, at 8 p.m. and see how it pans out. Personal favorites?

Pretty stoked for “Cavalier,” the opening track on Post Tropical. A beautiful piece of work, it slowly builds from hushed keys and hand claps to soaring sounds of bass, drums, and of course his gorgeous vocals.

Get excited.

Also, hoping to God and crossing my fingers that he pulls out “We Don’t Eat,” from his 2012 EP, because although it’s an oldie, it’s a goodie. Opening the track up with a quiet repetition of one piano key and soft drums, it escalades into this track with incredible depth. 

I like the way this man builds up his jams, because man, it gives me shivers.

Basic point: Go to this show. You don’t need to be a fan of soul or indie or folk to like this man. The mixes on this album are incredibly complex and conversely inspired with different influences that anyone can fall in love with him.

Get yo tickets: http://www.stgpresents.org/tickets/by-month/eventdetail/1537/29/james-vincent-mcmorrow#

Also, it’s not sold out, and it’s at one of the best venues in Seattle, so I’d intensely frown at you if you didn’t go. And I hate frowning.

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Ariana Rivera

Rad Report: A digitized croc for the night!—Digitalism’s Seattle Show 11/4

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Moelle and Tüfekçi, duo of the remarkable Digitalism, walk onto the stage behind a screen of white drop down strings that hang from the ceiling. Complete with lights beaming upon the threads and the performers as well, the duo assumes each of their roles behind their computers and synthesizers. They appear nearly digital—looking as if they are part of an LED light screen.

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This is the scene that I walked into at Digitalism’s show at the Crocodile on November fourth. Standing in the crowd of people that were all there to experience the good vibes that were radiating through the room didn’t feel like your average concert; it felt more like a full experience between the extreme electronic sounds, the smooth vocals, and the amazing light show which seemed to become more intense throughout the night.

After their first album, Idealism, and their Pogo EP were released in 2007, the German duo’s success took off. I’ve personally been into digitalism for a while since I heard Pogo shortly after it was released and instantly heard brilliance beam out of my headphones. It had been a while since I’d heard that Digitalism was going on a US tour, so I was stoked to have this opportunity to be able to see and write about them. I’m not interested in all electronic music, but unlike others of similar genres, Digitalism adds unique themes within their songs. Much of their music actually has vocals, which are preformed by Moelle—unlike most other electronic artists, he even sings on stage at live shows.

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At the Crocodile, I found myself mesmerized by the duo’s initial strong electronic build with the synths. A few songs into it, I became even further impressed as Moelle walked over to his vintage microphone and began adding suave vocals. I noticed that many of the songs had a retro feel to them, just as the microphone did. This really added an exciting atmosphere to the music and took the normal electronic feel from average to extraordinary.

The show was taken to another level as the music came to a halt after an intense build—Moelle and Tüfekçi walk off stage as the crowd goes wild for an encore. The lights begin to flash and the two once again stroll over to their synths. The drops their indietronica beats as Moelle walks over to the old-fashioned mic for the last time of the night, allowing his vocals to resonate toward the audience. For the last couple songs (ending with their most popular “Wolves” and “Pogo”), the crowd is enthralled by the funk vibe seems to rush out of the performers. “Pogo” is a bright song with creative, yet simple, lyrics—and what a great song to end with. One line from the song, “Yeah, woohoo, there’s something in the air” seems to capture the entire feeling of the night. As soon as Digitalism walked nearly weightlessly onto stage, there was definitely a different feeling in the air that continued until they played their final beats.

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Rad Rebs