hopscotch Archive

Album Review: Estrangers — Season of 1000 Colors

If there was a common musical thread connecting most of the several dozen acts at Hopscotch 2013, it was edginess: an approach to songwriting and performance that leaned in an outsider direction. From Pere Ubu (sort of the grand-old-men of the genre) to The Breeders (90s sensations reunited) to John Cale (avant garde giant goes

Hopscotch Festival Part 3: The Breeders and John Cale

Saturday was the third and final night of Hopscotch 2013, and our second night. Equipped with a more realistic game plan, we ventured forth with plans to take in a more modest number of shows. In the end, we saw even fewer than planned, but what we did see and hear was impressive. We almost

Hopscotch Festival Part 2: Rose Windows

Maybe it’s something to do with the soggy Pacific Northwest climate, but there have been a number of bands coming out of the region who play a sort of tribal-psych music. These artists – though each possessing their own unique, identifiable style – are influenced and informed to some degree by at least three factors:

Hopscotch Festival Part 1: Brett Harris, Mikal Cronin

“Best-laid plans of mice and men oft go astray,” wrote Robert Burns (and not, as I had thought, Shakespeare, though he wrote pretty much every other quotable quote). My significant other and I were reminded of this truism as the second night of Hopscotch 2013 (our first night) unfolded. Though we had carefully mapped out

Festival Preview: Hopscotch 2013

Today I’m headed on a road trip to Raleigh, NC for my second Hopscotch Festival. As with last year, I plan on taking in shows by a variety of undiscovered, bubbling-under, and critically-acclaimed acts from around the USA and abroad. Because there are so many venues – eighteen, in fact – with performances running concurrently,

Concert Review: Hopscotch Festival, Part 4 – The dB’s

In one sense, the Long View Center is an ideal venue to catch a show: unobstructed lines of sight, comfortable seats, and – best of all – a building purpose-built for good acoustics (it was originally constructed as a church). However, it’s certainly not the most rock’n’roll of places: the lighting is designed to provide

Concert Review: Hopscotch Festival, Part 3 – Field Report, Azure Ray

I had hoped to catch a few minutes of Yo La Tengo‘s 11:30 set at Memorial Auditorium, but (a) that venue was in the wrong direction and (b) The dB‘s were going on at the Long View Center at midnight. And more than any other act, The dB’s were my reason for going to Raleigh.

Concert Review: Hopscotch Festival, Part 2 – The Jesus and Mary Chain

A bit after 9pm, The Jesus and Mary Chain took the stage. Though I bought Psychocandy on vinyl upon its original release (1985), this was another band I had never seen live. I knew enough about their sound – it hasn’t changed much in the ensuing quarter-century – to expect their signature approach of melody

Concert Review: Hopscotch Festival, Part 1 – Zammuto, Built to Spill

The Hopscotch Festival was a three-day event (September 6-8, 2012), but my schedule only allowed me to make a single-day trip to the festival in Raleigh, NC. I made the four-plus hour drive drive east, checked into my hotel and made my way downtown in time for the first show at the main stage, the