CONCERT REVIEW – Kid Ink @ Neptune Theatre

Kid Ink
Neptune Theatre, Seattle, WA
04.02.14

Review by T. Monte

The fog is beginning to lick its way up the walls and slowly warp the dim lights that spot the inside of the Neptune Theatre. Half-empty water bottles litter the stage as fans wipe their foreheads and squint their eyes towards the backdrop. DJ Tech takes the stage, and the bass shakes the bottles to life as they rattle off of the ledge. It is moments until Kid Ink will appear, and you can sense that the water bottles aren’t the only thing about to go down.

You best be anticipating that dance party, son!

Traveling in a pretty rad tour bus, with a very cordial entourage, Kid Ink stopped in Seattle and brought with him a party that didn’t disappoint. This was only his second date on his My Own Lane Tour. Amid the crazy lights and deep bass, Kid Ink’s energy and vicious tongue made the fans go wild on an unsuspecting Wednesday night. He rapped his motha******’ heart out. For both the floor and the stage, it was impossible to not enjoy the carefree atmosphere. The crowd reverberated mutual respect with high fives and huge grins.

Kid Ink “hand selected” a few fans to dance alongside him when he performed, “Main Chick.” When I say hand selected, I mean that he picked the pretty ones. But the prettiest belle of the ball, and the highlight of the entire evening, was none other than Seattle’s own Macklemore. Sneaking out the first few beats of “Can’t Hold Us,” a suited, dapper Macklemore performed his hit single with a sweaty, shirtless Kid Ink assisting on vocals. The floors were shaking. This crowd was now reverberating some Seattle pride.

The conclusion of the show was imminent when DJ Tech began the opening notes for “Show Me.” Armed with (pick one: his microphone; a Sharpie; ageless style), Kid Ink rolled out the last few songs on stage (pick one: fantasizing about peanut butter cookies but never putting it on track; signing random fan items; wondering where the best tat shop in Seattle was). If you picked all six, you’re probably correct. This Kid Ink show was awesome, even without peanut butter cookies.

Opening talent included Bizzy Crook and King Los. Both rappers were instrumental in setting the tone for the evening, and, as up and coming artists, both were a pleasure to watch perform. Be sure to follow @iamkinglos on Instagram and tag yourself to see the awesome video he recorded of all the fans at Neptune.

Photos by Sunita Martini

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CONCERT REVIEW: Against Me! @ Neptune Theatre

Against Me!
Neptune Theatre, Seattle, WA
03.25.14

Review by T. Monte

The barricades were up and ready for Against Me!’s pounding and heartfelt performance Tuesday night at the Neptune Theatre, making room for not only the push and pull of the crowd, but for the tenacity with which this band continues to knock down their own walls and pave their own path. Forming in Gainesville, Florida in the late 90′s, Against Me! helped solidify a burgeoning punk scene in the southeast in a place where kids were still looking for a voice. I know because I was that kid, sweating it out in line at the State Theatre in St. Pete, waiting to see Hot Water Music put it all on the line. As the band evolves, however, the message and purpose has not been lost on them. Everybody is free to find and be themselves, barriers or no.

Lead singer Laura Jane Grace’s veracity spans across their clutch of albums, and her bold and fierce lyrics come knocking once again in their latest release, Transgender Dysphoria Blues. Initially said to be about a transsexual prostitute, Grace goes on record to say that this album indeed expresses the struggles and truth of her transition from male to female. With a few songs down, Grace stops the show to thank the Seattle crowd, happy to have so much support, and offers a few words of her own advice: you can’t make anyone else happy until you are happy with yourself. But, before things could get too mushy, Grace kicks off the set again with Walking is Still Honest. In lieu of Tegan Quin, Against Me!’s performance of Borne on the FM Waves of the Heart was assisted by Laura Stevenson, who opened the show along with Cheap Girls.

Against Me! has proven time and again that they have the guts to stick around and make unabashed music. Along with singer Grace and guitarist James Bowman, new bassist Inge Johansson and drummer Atom Willard are nothing short of veterans themselves. And, while the Transgender Dysphoria Blues tour may be a first for the group, they will undoubtedly find fuel for their next fire, burn brighter, and continue on.

Setlist:

FUCKMYLIFE666
Cliché Guevara
New Wave
Walking Is Still Honest
Unconditional Love
I Still Love You Julie
True Trans Soul Rebel
Don’t Lose Touch
I Was a Teenage Anarchist
Turn Those Clapping Hands into Angry Balled Fists
Pretty Girls (The Mover)
Transgender Dysphoria Blues
Miami
Borne on the FM Waves of the Heart (with Laura Stevenson)
Dead Friend
Thrash Unreal
Black Me Out

Photos By Sunita Martini

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Laura Stevenson

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TOP 10 SEATTLE CONCERTS FOR APRIL

Ordered by concert date, I would highly recommend attending one, two, or all ten of these concert this April in Seattle. There is a nice split of music between genres to please everyone’s music taste. I hope to see you at a couple live shows this April. This month is probably the most exciting month for live music in Seattle so be sure to check your local venue to see all of the other insane artists playing this month in Seattle.
Can’t choose! This month’s number one recommendation would be see the Ellie Goulding at the Paramount Theater. This UKnatives will be playing in front crowd of die hard fans. Only have the chance to go to one concert in April, this is the one we would recommend the most. Tickets still available.
Which concert are you most excited for or even already planning on attending?

Young The Giant – April 5th & 6th – Showbox

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Bastille – April 8th – Showbox

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Chromeo – April 16th – Showbox

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Switchfoot – April – 18th – Showbox

2013, SWITCHFOOT

Ellie Goulding – April 23rd – Paramount Theatre

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1975 – April 24th – Showbox

The 1975 At The Henry Fonda Theatre

Franz Ferdinand – April 24th – Showbox

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The Wanted – April 26th – Showbox

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You Me At Six - April 27th - El Corazon

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Manchester Orchestra – April 29th – Neptune Theatre

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The Sounds Bring the Noise from Sweden

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The Sounds
Neumos in Seattle, WA
03.19.14

Review by Logan Westom

They might not be living in America but that does not mean it’s going to stop The Sounds from touring North America with some of the best 90’s Swedish synth pop-rock you have ever heard. A recent stop in America’s Emerald City of Seattle Washington, at a small grungy little venue called Neumos, a perfect atmosphere was made for feisty lead singer Maja Ivarsson. Full of attitude and personality it wasn’t a show with a boring front-women who just stood frozen the whole show moving her lips. Instead she was active all over the stage. Kicking and smashing mic stands, jumping into the crowd and joining the party off the stage, and making everyone in the front row clap their hands even it means she had to clap their hands for them (see the photos below).

The gritty nature of Neumos complimented the gritty nature of the set The Sounds produced. With fog so think you could hardly see your hand in front of your face, cigarette smoke from the stage, and punk-rock performance by The Sounds it felt like a dark ally scene. This worked 100% in The Sounds favor as they ripped apart their set as Ivarsson went through 5 different microphones. When a girls sings that good and is rocking so hard that she breaks 5 different microphones you know it was a good show!

With the release of their fifth full length record in fall of 2013 there was a slew of songs to pick from for the set list. With a mix of old classics like Living in America to Seven Days a Week, instant hits like Tony The Beat and Painted By Numbers, there was still space for a ton of new material like Shake Shake Shake and Take It The Wrong Way. Full set list from the Seattle show below.

The night would not be over or have any feeling of an extraordinary ending without one last over the top crazy stunt from Ivarrson. And she gave the crowd just that, literally by giving herself to the crowd. Diving with her back to the crowd Ivarrson crowd surfed on top of the screaming fans for a moment before being falling through on the weak arms of the exhausted crowd. It was surely an exit to remember!

Opening act Blondfire was sure a sight for my eyes. The beautiful front women Erica Driscoll resembled the softer, younger, and less aggressive version of The Sounds singer Ivarrson, but still had a voice that packed a punch. Accompanied by sibling Bruce Driscoll on guitar, Blondfire was an opener that as soon as you hear the first 30 seconds you yell out to the person next to you “You were right, their soooo good!!!”. (which is what I did). Then went I home and downloaded their album instantly.

Set List
No One Sleeps When I’m Awake
Song with a Mission
Seven Days a Week
Shake Shake Shake
Something to Die For
The Best of Me
Dorchester Hotel
Painted by Numbers
Wish You Were Here
4 songs and a Fight
Emperor
Take it The Wrong Way
Living in America
Outlaw
Ego

Encore
Tony the Beat
Hope You’re Happy Now

Photos By Logan Westom

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LOCAL TALENT: Moneta

Moneta
Showbox at the Market in Seattle, WA
03.22.14

Review by T. Monte

High energy packed the house at Showbox at the Market Saturday night, as Moneta took the stage for their new album release, The Only Constant. Formed here in Seattle in 2007, this group has been steadily gaining momentum and a fervent fan base, all the while seeking to numb the growing pains of what it takes to be a successful band in this technological era. This night, however, was a celebration, and what better way than to kick off a new record in the heart of downtown? This show was certainly one for Moneta’s storybook, to be passed down in the magical lore that is the Market Showbox.

The excitement and anticipation was evident not only for their new material but for their time-tested songs as well. The crowd sang along through the entire set – old, new, cover – you name it. Guitarists Chris Holbrook, Kevin Hanaford, and Michael Rapson took knives to the air while bassist Benjamin Brockman played a convincing role as backbone. Drummer Leo Martin was hypnotizing, every beat seamless and effortless. With all members on backing vocals, the microphone was generously held out to the fearless crowd surfers singing along as they floated by. Save Me From Myself had even the stage guards bobbing their heads. Lead singer Jordan Thompson tossed a musical gem when he performed an acoustic rendition of Weezer’s Say It Ain’t So.

The Only Constant’s first hit single, All My Fault, was saved for near-last, as Moneta played until curfew. The crowd begged for a second encore, but alas, it was time to close the chapter on this triumphant evening and tuck the guitars away in their little guitar beds.

As they continue to pen away, Moneta relies on their passion and love for their craft as a steady anchor and a common bond. Embracing this idea, their new album is a reflection of necessity and sincerity. You can follow them on Facebook, and mark your calendar the next time they’re around. This band is one of Seattle’s best kept secrets.

Set List:

The Jackal and the Lion
Haunted
Something To Fight For
The Hardest Thing
Like Smoke
Best Shot
Rewrite the World
Say It Ain’t So (Acoutic Cover)
The Devil Inside
Save Me From Myself
Life in Rewind
All My Fault

Photos by Sunita Martinin

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