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Everything Turned to Color at Rockwood

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I don’t wanna make this about politics, but after the election, things looked pretty bleak in New York City. Long faces on the subway. Disbelief and confusion everywhere you turned, especially among my artist friends who, lets be honest, tend to empathize and emote a little bit extra.

It was at a Blake Morgan show shortly thereafter where the ice melted for me. Where a roomful of humans took solace in music and in each other. There was a true catharsis that night, and more than a few emotional hugs and squeezes after the show. That’s when I briefly met Neha Jiwrajka.

“From Everything Turned to Color?” I asked.
“Yes,” she beamed.
“I can’t wait for your new record!”

Since then I’ve had an advance copy of the Morgan produced Life Imagined in heavy rotation. I’ll be singing its praises closer to the official release in June, but for now I can tell you that last night Everything Turned to Color owned Stage 3 at Rockwood Music Hall like the boss-ass Brooklyn troubadours they are.

If you’ve seen them live, you know singer Neha Jiwrajka, and guitarists (and siblings) Bryan and Kyle Weber literally make beautiful music together. Such was the case at Rockwood, augmented by the multi-talented Jonathan Ellinghaus on drums, Blake Morgan on bass, and special guest Ian Sharkey from Zelazowa. The band treated the crowd to the best of Life Imagined, including lead single “When You Wish Me There.”

Neha is the real deal. There’s no other way to say it, taking soulful ownership of the material and possession of every eyeball in the house whenever she’s on stage. The songs, penned with sophistication by Bryan, and expertly adorned by Kyle’s jazzy sensibilities, are lush with harmony and strike a nearly impossible balance of playful melancholy. Even toe-tappers like “Once Upon a Lifetime,” sweeter than a julep on a porch-swing, have an innate twinge of loss that isn’t so much sad as it is c’est la vie.

Maybe 2017 is the year everything turns to color after all.

Neha switched from ukulele to piano for the pensive “Love and Be Loved,” with a wisdom that cuts right to the quick: “We all want the same things / To love and be loved / Before it’s too late.”

The band played swinging renditions of the eponymous “Everything Turned to Color,” the wistful “Adelynn,” and the stirring “Somebody Loves You,” which is slowly becoming one of my favorites this year.

Ragtime comparisons may be apropos, and while I hear some James Taylor, Mark Knopfler, some Ella Fitzgerald by way of Israel Kamakawiwo’Ole and Django Reinhardt, Everything Turned to Color is its own singular concoction. Three unique talents that meld into something truly extraordinary.

Catch them on tour now.

Brooklyn's own MC Krispy E has an opinion about most things you can put in your ear, eye, and mouth holes.

Music

Better Oblivion Community Center

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Surprise release from Conor Oberst and Phoebe Bridgers brings together two emotive indie artists.

Better Oblivion Community Center – Better Oblivion Community Center.png

 

 

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2018 in Music

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Music is alive and well. Here are some favorites from records I listened to this year.

Be the Cowboy – Mitski
Mitski has beautiful momentum since Puberty 2. Her latest, Be the Cowboy, ups the ante. (more)


The Tree of Forgiveness – John Prine

Septuagenarian John Prine has honed his craft for well over 50 years and never once had to twerk.

Kids See Ghosts – Kanye West & Kid Cudi
Cudi’s record is the best of Kanye’s multiple releases in 2018, tweets aside.

boygenius – boygenius
Julien Baker, Phoebe Bridgers, and Lucy Dacus join forces as boygenius for an EP that’ll play you like a violin.

Suspiria (Music for the Luca Guadagnino Film) – Thom Yorke
Haven’t seen the movie yet, but this record paints a vivid picture on its own.

Things Have Changed – Bettye LaVette
The freshest take on Dylan since Dylan.

Look Now – Elvis Costello
Elvis is incapable of making a mediocre album. (more)

I’ll Be Your Girl – The Decemberists
A well-oiled music-making machine – it was fun to hear them play with synths this year.

Twentytwo in Blue – Sunflower Bean
Shoulda hit the big time with this decidedly Fleetwood Mac–flavored record.

Rock 2 – The Dean Ween Group
You can expect more of these beer–smelling solo records until Ween make new music.

This is America – Childish Gambino 
One of the best songs of the year, and definitely the best video.

Superoganism – Superoganism
These kids can play on my lawn any day. (more)

Sparkle Hard – Stephen Malkmus & The Jicks
The voice of Pavement makes another solid record with The Jicks.

Ordinary Corrupt Human Love – Deafheaven
Alls I know is… this song helped me out this year.

Burning Daylight – Blake Morgan
Restored and remastered version of Blake’s sophomore album shines like a diamond. (more)

Pinkus Abortion Technician – Melvins
A good reminder from the drunk uncle of grunge.

Wide Awake! – Parquet Courts
Some solid tracks, but I wanted to like this collab with Danger Mouse more.

Thank You For Today – Death Cab for Cutie
Latest record has some fans burning their membership cards, and others fainting into their lattes.  (more)

Aquarelle – Jesse Harris
Caught Jesse twice in NYC this year and dug his shit.

Egypt Station – Paul McCartney
Inconsistent record from the most consistent artist of his generation. (more)

Kumi – Blak Emoji
Blew the ceiling of Arlene’s Grocery this year.

Down The Road Wherever – Mark Knopfler
Mark’s solo records continue to hit the sweet spot.

Lil Peep & XXXTENTACION – Falling Down
Posthumously released earworm.

Using a host of pen names, Eric Curran has been blogging in one form or another for well over 10 years. He's a partner at One Track Mine, and also runs the blog Jealous Foodies.

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20 OF THE MOST DISTINCT VOICES IN HIP HOP

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Hip Hop has been woven into the fabric of our lives with some very distinct voices. They are unique, unforgettable and not easily duplicated. Here are 20 reminders to refresh your memory just in case you forgot.

So LISTEN UP! Did it ring a bell? Did they make your list?

20. Cardi B 

19. Kodak Black

18. Andre 3000

17. Eminem

16. Foxy Brown

15. Ice Cube

14. Young Jeezy

13. Too Short

12. Rakim

11. Lil Wayne

10. Jadakiss

9. Nas

8. Notorious BIG

7. Uncle Luke

6. Tupac

5. Slick Rick

4. E-40

3. Q-Tip

2. Snoop Dogg

1. Busta Rhymes

HB aka The World Traveler is fully committed to exploring and sharing with you what the world has to offer in travel and music. Get on board and enjoy the ride!

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