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By Sam Sessa and Sam Sessa,Sun Reporter | August 31, 2006
Mike McMorris' laptop holds an arsenal of musical possibilities. Through his computer and synth setup, McMorris can play drums, bass, guitar and keys, sing and create an endless number of sounds - some he's heard before, and others entirely new. On Saturday, McMorris and the handful of other computer musicians who form the group VALIS (short for Vast Active Laptop Intelligence System), will plug into a P.A. upstairs at the Ottobar and deliver a few hours of live, improvised drum and bass.
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By Sam Sessa and Sam Sessa,sam.sessa@baltsun.com | September 17, 2009
A couple of years ago, Moby was at the MTV Music Awards when he had a career-changing epiphany. "I was sitting between Christina Aguilera and Ludacris, and I had this moment where I just started thinking to myself, 'What the hell am I doing here?' " he said. "Nothing against Ludacris and Christina Aguilera, but it's not a world I want to have anything to do with." At the time, Moby was very much a part of that world. A longtime staple on the dance music scene, Moby, who performs at Rams Head Live tonight, became an international pop star seemingly overnight with his 1999 effort "Play."
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ENTERTAINMENT
By Ishita Singh and Ishita Singh,Sun Reporter | June 5, 2008
There aren't many chances to watch the sun rise over the Key Bridge after taking part in an all-night dance party on the shores of the Chesapeake Bay. But that's what more than 4,000 electronica fans will be doing Saturday -- and Sunday morning -- at the 10th anniversary of the Starscape music festival. "The whole vibe of it was just incredible," said Clay Parnell of New York-based dance band Biodiesel about playing in last year's show. "Starscape is just one of those festivals where I was still there when the last notes were playing at 6:15 and still partying, even though I had been there for like 14 hours.
ENTERTAINMENT
By Chris Kaltenbach and Chris Kaltenbach,chris.kaltenbach@baltsun.com | September 3, 2009
Music is everywhere in Peter Blasser's house - just not where you'd expect to find it. Sure, there's the tuba upstairs, an instrument he's been playing since he was a kid. And there are the various acoustic stringed instruments, like the Moroccan-style lute, that he's been building since high school. But there's also the wall-hanging in his basement, the shirt on a hook outside his bedroom closet and the boxlike gadget tucked on a shelf above his first-floor work space. These objects don't look particularly melodic, but the sounds they make are attention-grabbers of the first order, whirring and wheezing and woofing sounds unlike anything your father's symphony - or rock band, for that matter - ever produced.
ENTERTAINMENT
July 10, 2008
Hometown: Washington Members: Padma Soundararajan, lead vocals and synthesizer; David Garber, piano and synthesizers; Neel Singh, electric bass and synthesizers; Ramtin Arablouei, drums, percussion and samplers Founded: 2007 Style: electronica Influenced by: Radiohead, Sound Tribe Sector 9, Sigur Ros, the Roots Notable: Most of the band has played together since they met in college a few years ago. They were a hip-hop group until refocusing on...
ENTERTAINMENT
By J.D. Considine | January 23, 1997
AmberThis Is Your Night (Tommy Boy 1170) Although pop music pundits are predicting that "electronica" -- the catch-all term applied to ambient, trip-hop, drum 'n' bass and other cutting-edge club music styles -- is destined to be the next big thing, it's hard to imagine such arty fare displacing dance pop in the hearts of average listeners. Particularly when there are still albums like Amber's "This Is Your Night" around. Granted, she isn't the most distinctive vocalist on the dance scene today, but what Amber lacks in originality she more than makes up in spirit.
ENTERTAINMENT
By J.D. Considine COUNTRY BR5-49 | June 18, 1998
Various ArtistsAmp 2 (Astralwerks 7588)Just as electronica was being declared pop music's next big thing, MTV announced, amid much fanfare, that it was launching "Amp," a music video show designed to capitalize on this new dance-music culture. It was introduced as a look into the future of video music.Or so went the hype. Unfortunately, "Amp" didn't find MTViewers eager to fast-forward past the guitar bands that had long been the cable channel's bread and butter. True, acts like the Chemical Brothers, Prodigy and Propellerheads made significant inroads, but let's be honest - three bands do not a revolution make.
ENTERTAINMENT
By Rashod D. Ollison and Rashod D. Ollison,rashod.ollison@baltsun.com | April 2, 2009
By the time Dan Deacon released Spiderman of the Rings, his 2007 national critical breakthrough, he had already established himself as a manic performer. His reputation stretched well beyond his base in Baltimore. The success of the album, which garnered kudos from Pitchfork and Rolling Stone, brought on more opportunities to tour. Soon, thousands of artsy hipster types across the country filled Deacon's shows, where he often shunned the stage, turning his performances into goofy participatory events.
FEATURES
By J.D. Considine and J.D. Considine,SUN POP MUSIC CRITIC | May 28, 1997
There was a telling moment toward the end of U2's set at RFK Stadium on Monday night. After dedicating "Please" to Native American activist Leonard Peltier, the band proceeded to bend the song slowly out of shape, stretching the music like Silly Putty as it moved from a dub-inflected bass groove to what could best be described as rock-oriented ambient.Then, as Bono rallied through the final, pleading verse, drummer Larry Mullen Jr. waded in with a distinctly martial cadence. As the band rallied around him, that beat sounded more and more like the opening to "Sunday, Bloody Sunday."
ENTERTAINMENT
By Chris Kaltenbach and Chris Kaltenbach,chris.kaltenbach@baltsun.com | September 3, 2009
Music is everywhere in Peter Blasser's house - just not where you'd expect to find it. Sure, there's the tuba upstairs, an instrument he's been playing since he was a kid. And there are the various acoustic stringed instruments, like the Moroccan-style lute, that he's been building since high school. But there's also the wall-hanging in his basement, the shirt on a hook outside his bedroom closet and the boxlike gadget tucked on a shelf above his first-floor work space. These objects don't look particularly melodic, but the sounds they make are attention-grabbers of the first order, whirring and wheezing and woofing sounds unlike anything your father's symphony - or rock band, for that matter - ever produced.
ENTERTAINMENT
By Rashod D. Ollison and Rashod D. Ollison,rashod.ollison@baltsun.com | April 2, 2009
By the time Dan Deacon released Spiderman of the Rings, his 2007 national critical breakthrough, he had already established himself as a manic performer. His reputation stretched well beyond his base in Baltimore. The success of the album, which garnered kudos from Pitchfork and Rolling Stone, brought on more opportunities to tour. Soon, thousands of artsy hipster types across the country filled Deacon's shows, where he often shunned the stage, turning his performances into goofy participatory events.
ENTERTAINMENT
July 10, 2008
Hometown: Washington Members: Padma Soundararajan, lead vocals and synthesizer; David Garber, piano and synthesizers; Neel Singh, electric bass and synthesizers; Ramtin Arablouei, drums, percussion and samplers Founded: 2007 Style: electronica Influenced by: Radiohead, Sound Tribe Sector 9, Sigur Ros, the Roots Notable: Most of the band has played together since they met in college a few years ago. They were a hip-hop group until refocusing on...
ENTERTAINMENT
By Ishita Singh and Ishita Singh,Sun Reporter | June 5, 2008
There aren't many chances to watch the sun rise over the Key Bridge after taking part in an all-night dance party on the shores of the Chesapeake Bay. But that's what more than 4,000 electronica fans will be doing Saturday -- and Sunday morning -- at the 10th anniversary of the Starscape music festival. "The whole vibe of it was just incredible," said Clay Parnell of New York-based dance band Biodiesel about playing in last year's show. "Starscape is just one of those festivals where I was still there when the last notes were playing at 6:15 and still partying, even though I had been there for like 14 hours.
ENTERTAINMENT
By Rashod D. Ollison and Rashod D. Ollison,Sun Pop Music Critic | May 3, 2007
The weightlessness and all-encompassing feel of the new music makes the band's name more significant. Air, the electronica French duo of Jean-Benoit Dunckel and Nicolas Godin, achieves a nice balance of accessibility and ethereal inventiveness on its latest album, Pocket Symphony. "In Chinese culture, `air' means the energy of the body," says Dunckel, the available half of Air, which plays Washington's 9:30 Club on Wednesday. "Our music is closer to that. It's more relaxing." But the album is far from somnolent.
ENTERTAINMENT
By Sam Sessa and Sam Sessa,Sun Reporter | August 31, 2006
Mike McMorris' laptop holds an arsenal of musical possibilities. Through his computer and synth setup, McMorris can play drums, bass, guitar and keys, sing and create an endless number of sounds - some he's heard before, and others entirely new. On Saturday, McMorris and the handful of other computer musicians who form the group VALIS (short for Vast Active Laptop Intelligence System), will plug into a P.A. upstairs at the Ottobar and deliver a few hours of live, improvised drum and bass.
ENTERTAINMENT
By J.D. Considine COUNTRY BR5-49 | June 18, 1998
Various ArtistsAmp 2 (Astralwerks 7588)Just as electronica was being declared pop music's next big thing, MTV announced, amid much fanfare, that it was launching "Amp," a music video show designed to capitalize on this new dance-music culture. It was introduced as a look into the future of video music.Or so went the hype. Unfortunately, "Amp" didn't find MTViewers eager to fast-forward past the guitar bands that had long been the cable channel's bread and butter. True, acts like the Chemical Brothers, Prodigy and Propellerheads made significant inroads, but let's be honest - three bands do not a revolution make.
ENTERTAINMENT
By Rashod D. Ollison and Rashod D. Ollison,Sun Pop Music Critic | May 3, 2007
The weightlessness and all-encompassing feel of the new music makes the band's name more significant. Air, the electronica French duo of Jean-Benoit Dunckel and Nicolas Godin, achieves a nice balance of accessibility and ethereal inventiveness on its latest album, Pocket Symphony. "In Chinese culture, `air' means the energy of the body," says Dunckel, the available half of Air, which plays Washington's 9:30 Club on Wednesday. "Our music is closer to that. It's more relaxing." But the album is far from somnolent.
ENTERTAINMENT
By Sam Sessa and Sam Sessa,sam.sessa@baltsun.com | September 17, 2009
A couple of years ago, Moby was at the MTV Music Awards when he had a career-changing epiphany. "I was sitting between Christina Aguilera and Ludacris, and I had this moment where I just started thinking to myself, 'What the hell am I doing here?' " he said. "Nothing against Ludacris and Christina Aguilera, but it's not a world I want to have anything to do with." At the time, Moby was very much a part of that world. A longtime staple on the dance music scene, Moby, who performs at Rams Head Live tonight, became an international pop star seemingly overnight with his 1999 effort "Play."
FEATURES
By J.D. Considine and J.D. Considine,SUN POP MUSIC CRITIC | May 28, 1997
There was a telling moment toward the end of U2's set at RFK Stadium on Monday night. After dedicating "Please" to Native American activist Leonard Peltier, the band proceeded to bend the song slowly out of shape, stretching the music like Silly Putty as it moved from a dub-inflected bass groove to what could best be described as rock-oriented ambient.Then, as Bono rallied through the final, pleading verse, drummer Larry Mullen Jr. waded in with a distinctly martial cadence. As the band rallied around him, that beat sounded more and more like the opening to "Sunday, Bloody Sunday."
ENTERTAINMENT
By J.D. Considine | January 23, 1997
AmberThis Is Your Night (Tommy Boy 1170) Although pop music pundits are predicting that "electronica" -- the catch-all term applied to ambient, trip-hop, drum 'n' bass and other cutting-edge club music styles -- is destined to be the next big thing, it's hard to imagine such arty fare displacing dance pop in the hearts of average listeners. Particularly when there are still albums like Amber's "This Is Your Night" around. Granted, she isn't the most distinctive vocalist on the dance scene today, but what Amber lacks in originality she more than makes up in spirit.
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