In 2006, Brassland co-founder Bryce Dessner (also known for his work in The National and Clogs) created the MusicNOW Festival in his hometown of Cincinnati, Ohio, in order to highlight the work of contemporary musicians and artists "that take risks and do not fit neatly into categories." Held at Memorial Hall, MusicNOW has stayed true to its mission, inviting artists as eclectic as Sufjan Stevens, Grizzly Bear, The Books, Bang on a Can All-Stars, and Kronos Quartet.
Earlier this month, MusicNOW announced their lineup for 2010. Running from Tuesday, March 30, through Thursday, April 1, the fifth incarnation of MusicNOW will feature Joanna Newsom, St. Vincent, Justin Vernon (of Bon Iver) in a rare solo appearance, and yMusic, who will perform a festival-commissioned piece written by St. Vincent's Annie Clark.
Tickets, which cost $20 per concert or $50 for a three-day pass, are now available online here. If you prefer the old-fashioned way, you can call 1-800-838-3606.
To celebrate the festival's fifth anniversary, Each Note Secure compiled a history of the festival, including streaming video, pictures, and links to interviews. Some highlights we thought we'd post here, as well:
Sufjan Stevens plays "Lakes of Canada" on Memorial Hall's roof in 2007. (Video by Vincent Moon for La Blogotheque)
Andrew Bird belts one out onstage at the 2008 festival. (Photo by Joe Long)
Kronos Quartet performs at the 2009 festival. (Photo by Meredith Melragon)
The Nationalís Bryce Dessner is a man of a million projects, constantly generating material for his various musical identities, the latest of which is a new record, entitled Aheym for the Anti- label. Here, we actually see him sidestepping the guitar in favor of a string quartet and when we say STRING QUARTET we mean for it to be in all caps. Bryce has "gone big" and composed these pieces for one of the most widely-acclaimed contemporary classical ensembles out there, Kronos Quartet. Also a Brassland co-founder and member of Clogs, Bryce has been an indie rock ....continue....Tweet
Yo London! What's up? We're sometimes jealous of your fine city. You get this; we get this. Basically, your royalty wears funny, interesting hats; our royalty has terrible hairpieces. It doesn't seem fair. Anyhoo, sometimes your city gets jealous of our city too, and a perfect example of that is the first weekend of May when the Barbican is inviting over a ton of New Yorkers to celebrate awesome New York composer Steve Reich. That celebration includes two performances by Brassland's own Clogs. And it also includes this great interview with a bunch of America's ....continue....Tweet
Last week on Pitchfork, one could find a strange plethora of Brassland-related stories detailing the various doings of Bryce Dessner, Sufjan Stevens, and My Brightest Diamond's Shara Worden. We thought we'd compile them below for your convenience. The lead item was an announcement regarding Clogs' new song, titled "We Were Here," that features vocals from both Sufjan and Shara. Pitchfork's description was rather accurate: "an airy, delicately orchestrated affair with the voices of Stevens and Worden floating over a complicated bed of acoustic instruments." To listen to the previously unreleased jam, check out ....continue....Tweet
As we mentioned in June, Bryce and Aaron Dessner will be performing their new, 70-minute composition, The Long Count, at the Brooklyn Academy of Music's Next Wave Festival on October 28th, 30th, and 31st at 8 pm. The composition - which features a 14-piece ensemble as well as guest vocalists Kim and Kelley Deal (The Breeders), Shara Worden (My Brightest Diamond), and Matt Berninger (The National) - combines music and visuals (courtesy of Matthew Ritchie) to, according to BAM, "create a song-filled myth about the beginning of time." The National's e-mail newsletter was more direct, mentioning that ....continue....Tweet