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Mac Miller will release first live album on Dec. 17

Written by Scott Mervis on .

xlive-from-space-small.jpg.pagespeed.ic.DclxGmZPibPittsburgh rap star Mac Miller went on Twitter just after midnight Monday to announce that he will be releasing his first live album, "Live From Space," on Dec. 17.

It will highlight performances from his The Space Migration Tour, which stopped at Stage AE in July, and featured backup help from funk duo The Internet.

"Live From Space" -- a rare live rap album -- will offer five bonus tracks that did not appear on this year's "Watching Movies With The Sound Off."

The cover was designed by his brother, Miller McCormick.

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MGMT has that electric feel at Stage AE

Written by Scott Mervis on .

 

MGMTIt’s hard to think of a modern band that has produced three singles as irresistibly catchy as “Time to Pretend,” “Kids” and “Electric Feel” and then gone as weird as side two of the latest album.

MGMT has indeed frustrated fans who were thrilled to find an indie band with a feel for a hook.
But, as frontman Andrew VanWyngarden said in an interview last week, the people who have stuck with them “want a band that tries to create worlds for the listeners.”

That’s exactly what MGMT did Monday night at Stage AE taking the stage with the psychedelic explosion of “Flash Delirium,” VanWyngarden twisting the ’60s mantra with “turn it on, tune it in.” The six-piece band was backed by an eye-popping light show and a big screen flashing Crayola bursts that would have made Timothy Leary smile.

The second song, “Time to Pretend,” was met with a high-pitched shriek, and far from being bored with its 2008 hit — we can say “hit,” even though the popular “Oracular Spectacular” songs were not actually Top 40 hits — MGMT went at the tongue-in-cheek song about being rock stars with plenty of drive, thanks to energetic drummer Will Berman.

“Introspection,” an obscure and poppy Faine Jade cover, put us deep in the psych-folk ’60s realm, except for VanWyngarden’s cool high-tech trick of doubling as cameraman with a hand-held device that projected onto the screen, with psychedelic effects.

Fans of that first breakout album — who listened to other than the singles — were treated to the stone soul revival of “The Youth,” “Of Moons, Birds & Monsters” and “Weekend Wars” in the middle of the set, mixed with the dreamy, snowy ambiance of “Siberian Breaks.”

Its electronic ending segued brilliantly into “Electric Feel,” which quickly turned Stage AE into an “American Bandstand” scene of twirling bodies. Once again, it was an excited, electrifying version of the kind of song MGMT has at least temporarily abandoned. Same goes for the joyful “Kids,” which veered into a pounding club mix.

Having heard all three singles, there was a stream of people heading for the exit three songs before the finish. One thing they missed was Jackson and Jarod, from Pittsburgh’s own Grand Buffet (a former MGMT tourmate), jumping on stage to swing at an oversized cowbell like kids going at a pinata.

Someone commented that this show was “four years too late,” and, yes, it would have been nice to have seen MGMT and Pittsburgh-raised VanWyngarden in the “Oracular” heyday. On the other hand, the band’s psych-rock/space-rock/indie-pop worlds blended nicely in their own weird way. Let’s hope, though, for the sake of the pop fans, they can deliver one more of those tasty gems the next time they come around.

SETLIST

 

Flash Delirium
Time to Pretend
Introspection (Faine Jade cover)
The Youth
Of Moons, Birds & Monsters
Mystery Disease
Weekend Wars
Siberian Breaks
Electric Feel
Cool Song No. 2
Kids
Alien Days

Encore:
Your Life Is a Lie (with Grand Buffet)
Congratulations

 

 

 

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World Cafe to showcase Pittsburgh on Sense of Place

Written by Scott Mervis on .

donoraDonoraThe Philadelphia-based World Cafe radio show, which airs weekdays on WYEP-FM, will set its sights on Pittsburgh for the Dec. 11 episode of Sense of Place.

Previous editions have explored such scenes as Nashville, Brazil/Argentina, New Orleans, Dublin, Toronto and Portland, offering listeners a taste of the music, culture and personalities.

"I have always been a big fan of the city of bridges and tunnels so it was a joy to collaborate with WYEP on this quick visit to Pittsburgh. And the music! Listeners are going to love this show," World Cafe host David Dye said in a statement.

The Pittsburgh episode will feature:

• A live interview and performance session with Donora, recently recorded at WYEP.

• WYEP Morning Mix host Cindy Howes talking about Pittsburgh and playing her top five new local bands.

 

• An chat with Jerry Weber of the legendary Jerry's Records

• Renowned soul singer Billy Price selecting his top five classic Pittsburgh songs.

• An archived World Cafe performance by Rusted Root.

• And Pittsburgh music selections chosen by Dye.

World Cafe is nationally syndicated to more than 225 radio stations by NPR. It airs on WYEP at 6 p.m.

 

 

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More Vinyl Heaven! Jerry's Records to open Bargain Basement

Written by Scott Mervis on .

 

Jerry-Weber-and-his-son-WillieJerry Weber, right, and his son WillieAs if Jerry's Records wasn't already a slice of heaven, now the famous Squirrel Hill vinyl store is celebrating Black Friday and Record Store Day #2 with the opening of the new “Bargain Basement” in the cellar.

There you will find LPs, CDs, tapes, etc., for $1 or $2, and 45s for 50 cents.

"I had to rent the basement to get more space," Pittsburgh's favorite "hoarder" Jerry Weber explained.

"No more Vinyl-Paloozas," he added, referring to the summer sale at the Pittsburgh Irish Centre. "This is a 360-day-a-year Vinyl-palooza. No more Irish Centre and packing boxes and driving trucks around."

You'll get your fix of Kansas, Moody Blues, Journey, Billy Joel and Rod Stewart down there, and a whole lot else.

A few weeks ago, he says, "I got into a hoarder’s house in Ohio. The guy died and his wife called and said, 'Get this [s---] out of here. He had 5,500 jazz CDs, like 300 different Louis Armstrong CDs. I'm selling them for two bucks."

 

Hours are 9:30 a.m. to 6 p.m. at 2136 Murray Ave., 2nd Floor. Call 412-421-4533.

 

 

 

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Bruce Springsteen has 'High Hopes' set for January

Written by Scott Mervis on .

Happy Thanksgiving, Merry Christmas and Happy New Year, Bruce Springsteen fans!

A new album, "High Hopes," is coming on Jan. 14 and you can hear the single right now. Once again, the Boss puts a weighty message into an upbeat groove, this one a full-out funk workout with Rage guitarist Tom Morello and that blast horns we heard on his last tour.

His 18th album was recorded in New Jersey, LA, Atlanta, Australia and New York, and features the E Street Band, including contributions from the late Clarence Clemons and Danny Federici. Springsteen calls "some of our best unreleased material from the past decade.” One track is the oft-heard Springsteen-Morello collaboration on "The Ghost of Tom Joad."

Producing once again is Ron Aniello (Lifehouse, Barenaked Ladies), who helmed "Wrecking Ball" and was a nice change from Brendan O'Brien.

High Hopes tracklisting:

1. High Hopes (Tim Scott McConnell) – featuring Tom Morello
2. Harry’s Place  – featuring Tom Morello
3. American Skin (41 Shots) – featuring Tom Morello
4. Just Like Fire Would (Chris J. Bailey) – featuring Tom Morello
5. Down In The Hole 
6. Heaven’s Wall  – featuring Tom Morello
7. Frankie Fell In Love
8. This Is Your Sword
9. Hunter Of Invisible Game  – featuring Tom Morello
10. The Ghost of Tom Joad – duet with Tom Morello
11. The Wall
12. Dream Baby Dream (Martin Rev and Alan Vega) – featuring Tom Morello

 

 

 

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