MANNEQUIN MUSCLES: The new 18-track mixtape from The Pleasure Point is named American Singles, and if it’s not the first burst of blank-out escapism of 2018, I don’t know what is. The entire project swims in a large pool of influences and styles, from mid-tempo 1990s hip hop, indie-pop experimentation, slow-jam R&B and the like. Everything here comes courtesy of the triumvirate of JayCub Lake, Bobbie Rapp (yes, for this record it’s Bobbie, not Robbie, so save your emails) and EA Shorts. Mostly, what American Singles evidences is that escapism ain’t easy. Everything here is pretty snappily produced, clever without being irritatingly so and entertaining without demanding close attention. Find this at marchingbanana.bandcamp.com.
DECONSTRUCTION TIME AGAIN: Michael Potter, head of local label Null Zone, is hosting Atlanta’s Robby Kee (credited on his releases as Robert Hayes Kee) Saturday, Feb. 3 at Go Bar. His new album, Someone Is Very Interested in Your Life, recently came out on Null Zone and runs just over 46 minutes across two tracks. Each is constructed from found sound, field recordings of people and machines and slight ambient instrumentation. Also on the bill is Ohio’s Bobb Hatt, who is making his way down to Miami, FL’s International Noise Conference, and Potter’s own The Electric Nature, which is performing a heavy drone set. This all takes place after the evening’s planned drag show and should kick off around half past midnight. Please bring a few bucks cash for the touring musicians. For more information, see nullzone.bandcamp.com and facebook.com/NullZoneTapes.
NICE NIGHT: UGA student organization CURE will host a coffee-house night at ATHICA Friday, Feb. 2 at 7 p.m. This group raises money for children around the world who are in need of surgery. Featured artists are Holly Shinn and Ryan Hilscher; Kelly Saunders; Matt Henson; Allie Anderson; Rebecca Gemes; Kerri Owens and Collin Smith; Claire Cornell; and Nate Howell with Orrin Swayze. Admission is $10, and this money will go to support the CURE hospital in Niger. For more information, see facebook.com/CUREatUGA and cureatuga.org.
GET A JOB: Spectacularly accomplished soprano Rachel Eve Holmes is hosting a master class for professional musicians at the Hugh Hodgson School of Music Wednesday, Jan. 31 from 1:25–2:15 p.m. Tilted “Music Professions in the Real World,” the class will feature Holmes talking about how to find summer programs, audition techniques and additional professional opportunities. Please note that this class is designed for those working in traditional musician professions (orchestra, chamber, vocal, etc.), but I bet you a dollar some of the skills and techniques discussed would be beneficial to anyone with the gumption to learn. This event is sponsored by UGA Choirs, but to find out where at Hodgson this’ll happen, call the school at 706-542-3737. For more information on Holmes, see themcp.org/rachel-eve-holmes.
IN MEMORY OF VIC: Classic City Rotary is now accepting nominations for the second annual Vic Chesnutt Songwriter of the Year Award. All genres are eligible for participation. The criteria are pretty simple: The songwriter must live in the Athens area, have released the submitted song during 2017, and the composition must feature both words and music. The deadline for submission is Mar. 31, and this year’s award will be presented May 17 at The Foundry. See classiccityrotary.org for all other information. They’ve made it super easy, too, with a clearly visible link to all necessary knowledge right on their front page, so you’ve really no excuse, do you?
BIG SOUNDS: The new four-track self-titled EP from Tidalist is a slick and super fancy antidote and/or adversary to Athens’ tendency toward lower fidelity. It’s commercial-radio ready and has a very arena-type sound, but its bigness isn’t a hindrance or something merely grasped for. Indeed, although the lyrics are sometimes cumbersome (“Bold Ink”), the whole thing reminds me of a less-bombastic Imagine Dragons or, perhaps, a more bombastic latter-career Glass Tiger. And although this isn’t the type of thing I usually go in for, I enjoyed it. If you wanna hear it all, head to tidalist.bandcamp.com, and if you’re so inclined, check the band out at facebook.com/Tidalist.
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