Day 4: Discovery Den’s Rock ‘n’ Roll Finale

The fourth and final day of Pandora’s SXSW Discovery Den was heavy with diversity and ended with one of Austin’s heaviest hitters. Four days of hard work, some sweat, some rain, a lot of BBQ and so, so much music came to it’s grand finale last night.

Here are some of the highlights…

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Zella Day introduced herself telling the audience that they’re “…very badass for standing in the rain.” The packed crowd reciprocated her love and modesty with hoots and hollers. If I had to compare Day to someone it would be a younger Aimee Mann and some of her songs have a beautiful darkness that sounds very informed by Fiona Apple. Her set opened with “The Outlaw Josie Wales,” a swooning, soaring amorous pop song that compares her muse to Clint Eastwood’s iconic western anti-hero. The standout song for me was “Milk & Honey,” it had the bouyancy of sunny California indie-pop. Another standout was her closing song, “Hypnotic,” a sultry insta-hit with a hard and heavy groove. Read More →

Resonance: Weekly Curator Picks

Resonance
Rebel Heart is a testament and reinforcement to Madge’s relevance.

Screen Shot 2015-03-20 at 10.42.03 PMEven with a premature leak and subsequent release of six tracks last year, Rebel Heart is probably Madonna’s most varied and satisfying record in years. Offering upbeat EDM cuts, lush ballads and catchy pop ditties, she proves even to new audiences that she can still dominate the pop industry.

 

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CURATOR’S CHOICE

Swervedriver’s first album in 17 years plays like the ‘90s never ended.

Screen Shot 2015-03-20 at 10.50.14 PMMy Bloody Valentine finally releasing an album after a 22-year hiatus may have resurrected shoegazing. Slowdive are back together, RIDE has reunited and now Swervedriver have dropped their first album since 1998. I Wasn’t Born To Lose You somehow sounds very ‘90s without succumbing to predictable retro trappings.

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Americana Burned Through The Rain On Day 3 Of Discovery Den

Americana fans are troopers, they braved the hard, pouring rain. It was awesome to see a bunch of people still digging it as if the sun was out and shining. And I can understand why, every one of these acts set the stage on fire.

Here’s a bit of what happened on Day 3 of Discovery Den…

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Before the rain came down, Andrew Combs set the tone in more friendly Austin weather. From the first verse of the first song, he and his band reminded me of early Whiskeytown, but more sophisticated and studied. He’s blending a lot of old school country and soul into his own tone. He sound-checked with a cover of Bob Dylan’s “Tonight I’ll Be Staying Here With You” from Nashville Skyline, but he didn’t play it live. Would love to hear his full take on that one. Combs’ rhythm section was solid. Read More →

Discovery Den’s Hip-Hop and Soul Came Out For Day 2

Day two of #PandoraSXSW showed the soulful side of R&B, powerhouse hip-hop and lots of hands in the air. Discovery Den’s second day featured huge crowds onstage and off and ended with Wyclef Jean singing from the balcony.

Here’s some of what happened…

GG2A2592Raury brought dynamic drama to the stage.His full band, complete with keytar, drums, bass and back up singers joined him onstage. Raury turned out out arena quality rock, thought provoking folk, rap and heartfelt soul all in one set. We got to know him well, he introduced the audience to his dog and wore an outfit that set the tone for revolution. Read More →

Discovery Den Went Electronic On Day 1

The weather decided to cooperate on day one of Pandora’s Discovery Den, in the daytime the sun brought out the soulful side of electronic music and the warm night brought even more dancing.

A few highlights include…

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The Seattle duo ODESZA concocted  their signature sound of pitched R&B vocals with lush beats from controllers and live drumming on the side.  Highlights of the set included their heavy remix of ZHU‘s “Faded” and the crowd went wild when they dropped their hit “Sun Models.” Read More →

We’re Getting Happy with Pharrell

How are you celebrating the third annual International Day of Happiness on March 20? We are happy (get it?) to have teamed up with Pharrell Williams to help promote the celebration of happiness.

pharrellPharrell curated a special mixtape, with artists including A Tribe Called Quest, BeckGwen Stefani, Luther Vandross, Weezer and more. Not only will you find a pretty solid listening experience, the mixtape also has information on how you can participate in Pharrell’s Happy Party.

What songs make you happy?

Resonance: Weekly Curator Picks

Resonance
Carly Rae Jepsen returns with the ridiculously infectious “I Really Like You.”

Screen Shot 2015-03-13 at 12.53.30 PMFollowing the coattails of “Call Me Maybe,” the breakout anthem of 2011, Canada’s Carly Rae Jepsen’s 80s-inspired, sugary single “I Really Like You” is slated to be one of the big hits of the summer. Make sure to check out the music video featuring Tom Hanks lip-syncing her lyrics!

 

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CURATOR’S CHOICE

Nitty-gritty sophomore album from Oakland supergroup Sir Lord Von Raven.

Screen Shot 2015-03-13 at 12.52.32 PMAfter a six-year wait, The Age Of Machines has finally landed and was worth the wait. Featuring members of The Time Flys, The Gris Gris and Extra Classic; the impressively lengthy album (22 tracks!) crosses ‘60s Detroit soul/psych-rock and 70s glam with a toughness and swagger that rivals Mick Jagger.

 

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Pandora Discovery Den 2015: Day 4

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We’re following Friday’s feast of Americana with a plethora of sweet Saturday rock ambrosia. Brooklyn basted Ex Cops set the tone with indie pop confectionary perfection. Imagine all the flavors of vintage Sarah Records sprinkled over a glossy, synthy foundation.

Next up, Zella Day’s beautifully bittersweet melodies intertwine with the complex flavors that can only come from a magically produced concoction of keyboard wizardry, next-level production and timeless melodies culled from a lifelong collection of vintage vinyl. Read More →

Pandora Discovery Den 2015: Day 3

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For SXSW’s Friday menu, Pandora offers hearty courses of tangy, twangy Americana – beginning with a serving of Andrew Combs’ sophisticated songs. You’ll detect hints of Ryan Adams on the surface, but the deeper flavors recall Guy Clark and Mickey Newbury.

Follow this up with a side of Israel Nash’s desert folklore. Dripping with buttery vocal inflections and timeless guitar tones, Nash cooks up the kind of Neil Young inspired love songs that would make Lucinda Williams blush. Read More →