Old Sac’s Costume Shop: Evangeline’s Costume Mansion


It’s OCTOBER!!!! Finally we can start talking about what’s important: Halloween! When the pumpkin spiced everything starts hitting the shelves and the temperature starts dropping (hopefully), that’s when you know it’s time to get that Halloween costume ready to go. Whether you are going to a party, just handing out candy at your own front door, or have to go into a shift at work, there is always room for spoopy festivities.

This is where Evangeline’s Costume Mansion comes to the rescue. Nestled in the middle of Old Sac, Evangeline’s is a three-story Victorian mansion that has been retro fitted to house the largest collection of costumes, wigs, masks, weapons, party gear, and novelty items you will ever lay eyes on. Literally, it has everything!

On the first floor, there are mostly just novelty items. Things like themed kitchenware, bachelorette party items, bacon paraphernalia, party games, EDM/rave must-haves, fandom merchandise, Wicca supplies, children’s costumes, and even a small armory complete with sets of full samurai armor. Everything on the first floor ranges from the everyday like fairy figurines to the oddly specific like ice-cube trays to make gun shaped ice. One could get lost for hours on the first floor alone.

The second floor is where the serious costumes start. To make this level easy to navigate, it has been divided into themed rooms. There is the western/steam punk room, Medieval/renaissance royalty room, the BDSM/horror room, the tribal/military room, the first responder room, and the large main area that is devoted to ghosts, witches, and your classic Halloween villains. Between the rooms themselves, every wall is covered floor to ceiling with even more costumes and costume pieces. In addition to a masquerade and a Gatsby wall, the second floor boasts an entire wall dedicated to horrifying Halloween masks stationed behind an old-fashioned bar at the top of the stairs.

Speaking of stairs, if you take the spiral staircase up you’ll find yourself on the Technicolor third floor. Here, the over arching theme is FUN! Rooms and areas on this floor include but are far from limited to Disney/Fantasy, superheroes, decades, Star Wars, circus, and even a section for the adult novelty costumes. This is the floor were you can be a greaser, a gangster, a wizard, a mermaid, or just your favorite comic book character. Instead of a wall of masks, the third floor has two and a half walls of wigs in every length, cut, and shade you can think of. If you’ve got a dollar, you can try any of them on.

Maybe you already have a costume and just need a few accessories. No problem. Evangeline’s may have all the costumes you need, but they also have filled every nook and cranny with decorations, jewelry, hats, bags, gloves, makeup, tights, glasses, crowns and just about anything else.

Need satin gloves? Go to the second floor’s western room to the saloon girl section.

Need Fairy Wings? Go to the third floor’s fantasy room next to the old brick fireplace.

Want to throw together the ultimate rave outfit? The top of the stairs on the third floor has all the odds and ends you’ll need. After that, hit up the glow-in-the-dark EDM room on the first floor on your way out for all the coolest light up accessories.

As if the insane amount of costumes isn’t enough to keep you entertained, the mansion also has a built-in scavenger hunt. As you wander around the second and third floors, you should be on the look out for the 13 plaques that tell the legend of a different killer from history. You can grab a map from any of the wonderfully helpful associates working there.

This is seriously my favorite place to go to in Old Sac. I’ll drive all the way out there even if I think I might need a costume piece at some point in the near future. The downside is that street parking is metered but there is a parking garage well within walking distance that is usually open and relatively cheap.

Keep in mind that this time of year is the busiest for Evangeline’s, so maybe Google the hours that the shop is least busy. Peak hours can get a bit claustrophobic due to the number of people and the fact that they have shoved literally every bit of Halloween goodness they can into that place.

Overall, the Costume Mansion is a definite MUST as far as costume/Halloween ideas are concerned. How spooky can you be?

 

If Cryptids Could Chill: Loch Ness Monster


Good evening and welcome to my very first KSSU blog post!

Before I get into the nitty gritty of today’s topic, here’s a little intro to me. My name is Jasmine. I go by Jas, but you all at KSSU.com will know me as DJ Sundrop. (That’s sundrop as in the flower, not the Dr. Pepper Snapple Group soda.) I like flowers (obviously), funny movies, aliens, conspiracy theories, urban legends, colorful clothing items, fairy lights, cool socks, and pink. I have poor impulse control and my mouth filter doesn’t really work 95% of the time. I’m the oldest of six children, and I live to take care of people. All right, back to the important stuff.

If cryptids could chill with us, what kind of friends would they be? What music would they listen to? What snacks would they eat? What would their favorite shows be? Through this blog series we will be exploring these questions and many more, starting with my personal favorite: the Loch Ness Monster.

The Loch Ness Monster

More commonly known as: Nessie
Potential Twitter handle: @NessToMeetYou
Instagram aesthetic: a combination of soft aquatic posts and memes; private account, very selective with whom she lets follow

I like to imagine that the Loch Ness Monster, hereafter referred to as Nessie, would be one of my close friends. Nessie is the kindest cryptid you will ever meet. She is relatively quiet, and can be pretty timid until she feels comfortable around you. She likes to swim and sightsee alone; don’t try to join in with her, because she will more than likely freak out. There are very few beings she likes to hang out with; most people are too loud for her taste, which stresses her out.

There is a misconception that she is standoffish or rude, but it’s just that—a misconception. She is very thoughtful and sweet once you get to know her, as long as you don’t immediately rub her the wrong way. Some might say she has high standards, which—yeah, true, but it makes it all the more flattering once she finally considers you one of her friends.

Since she is so picky with the company she keeps, she is an incredibly loyal friend. You can always count on her to be there for you when you need her, whether that be in the middle of the night when you’re going through a rough patch or early in the morning when your car has broken down and you need a ride to work. She’s a great listener; she doesn’t always have advice when it comes to her friends’ complicated situations, but when she does, it is life changing.

Nessie likes soft house and dance-pop indie music. She likes calm, collected songs that she can lie in bed listening to really early in the morning before the day begins; she isn’t really into music that hypes you up, except on very specific occasions. Her favorite types of playlists are “Beach day songs,” “Songs you hear in liminal space,” and “Night drive” (all created by yours truly—listen in on KSSU to get a feel for those playlists!). Her favorite artists include Washed Out, Neon Indian (earlier songs), Com Truise, RKCB, and Cults. Her favorite song is “Cherry-coloured Funk” by Cocteau Twins.

Nessie likes to eat clean and healthy. She’s a vegan, but like, in a very subtle way. Her favorite snack is Stacy’s “Simply Naked” Pita Chips with hummus, carrots and celery sticks with hummus, or anything else with hummus, really. On occasion, she likes to bake gluten free crinkle cookies for herself and her close friends.

She has a very dry sense of humor and is a master of deadpan delivery. You can never tell if she’s joking or if she’s serious, which is what makes it fun for her. Her favorite show at the moment is The Good Place, but she is also a fan of The Eric Andre Show and Ozark.

Which cryptid do you want to hear about next? I’m currently stuck between writing about Mothman or the Jersey Devil. Chime off in the comments—or don’t, whatever makes you happy.

Thanks for reading, and remember: you’re incredibly important, one-of-a-kind, and I love you!

I Used To Cosplay in My Free-Time, But Now, It’s Just Depressing


Image courtesy of Hope Smith

I’ve been part of the anime fandom for years. I enjoy reading manga and being involved in discussions about current anime and poking fun at my friends who liked the ones that “weren’t that great”, or went down hill (I’m looking at you, Sword Art Online fans!).

I also have been involved in the cosplay community ever since 2008, and I’ve always loved seeing people put in effort each year at the conventions. I was amazed at how someone could spend so much time on a cosplay, that I wanted to take a stab at it myself.

In the past 9 years, I’ve cosplayed many characters: Jack Frost (Rise of the Guardians), Nick Wilde (Zootopia), Danny Phantom/Fenton, Tadashi and Hiro Hamada, Bill Cipher, Dipper Pines, Sombra from Overwatch, Yuri Katsuki from Yuri on Ice, Sans from Undertale, Adrien Agreste from Miraculous Ladybug, Peter Pan, “Other Mother” from Coraline, Happy Tree Friends characters, Dark Link from Legend of Zelda, Kevin from Ed, Edd, and Eddy, Sock from the YouTube short Welcome To Hell, Nagisa Shiota from Assassination Classroom, Prompto and Noctis from Final Fantasy XIV, and more! I love to do a range of characters from different shows and video games.

Though, I have little money to spend and only so much time to put together a cosplay, I’ve found myself using clothing I already have in my closet to recreate a character. This is called Closet Cosplay (really original, huh?). I’ve been closet cosplaying for 8 years, and I only started getting sick and tired of it after seeing how much the community has thrashed my side-profession/hobby.

It’s really interesting how people will find anything to complain about, especially in a community that is supposed to have the nicest people. The toxicity of the community has pushed me over the edge multiple times, and it was only a few months ago when I decided it best for me to get out while I still could.

From body shaming to the minimal impact of one’s skin color, I find myself almost disgusted at the thought of judging a cosplayer by anything other than the level of craftsmanship they have. Even then, it is constructive criticism. It’s depressing to read about my community being so nasty to others within it, and I will not stand for it. I will back up the victim in any means necessary, because being shamed for cosplaying a white character, when your skin is darker, shouldn’t be reason enough to start a comment war on Facebook, nor say it to that person’s face.

I have a cosplay account on Instagram, and I’ve hardly touched it since summer because I didn’t feel welcomed in the community anymore. I am of African-American and Asian ethnicity. My skin is darker, but I will still get into any character that intrigues me.

I’ve been told, on multiple occasions, that I should stop what I love because I don’t look “exactly like Peter Pan”, or  I’m “too dark to cosplay Moana.”

I’m sorry; Since when do you run this account?

How people have the audacity to tell me to my face that I’m “too black to cosplay a Disney Princess, other than Tiana,” is beyond me.

I was a coward and ran away from what a lot of cosplayers deal with on a day-to-day basis. I’m sensitive when being critiqued, but strong enough to hold my own when it comes to something I love.

To the men and women who deal with people like this each day, I must say ‘thank you’. You deal with what I can’t, and that makes me no better than the people spewing hate your direction. but I will always stand behind you when the time comes.

Cosplay is meant for everyone. We’re all just a bunch of nerds who still play dress up!

Ashes by NateWantsToBattle: Song Review


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WARNING: Spoilers!!!

 

You ever have a song that you listen to one time, and end up keeping it on repeat until you get sick of it? Well, I’ve been a victim of this ever since I heard the song Ashes, by NateWantsToBattle.

Let me tell you a little about the artist, first.

His full name is Nathan Sharp, and he creates song covers. I’ve been listening to him for about a year now, and I haven’t hated a single song he’s remade. He is from Richmond, Virginia, and specializes in Alt/Indie and Rock songs.

This song- Ashes- in particular gives me chills because the lyrics are a mix of creepy yet have a beat that makes me want to head-bang in my car and sing out loud with the windows rolled down on the freeway.

I also really love this song because it’s actually about a video game. The game is called Undertale, and-for those who don’t know- it’s a “Choice” game.

This means that whatever choices you make in the game will determine how the game is played and how it ends. It can be played on PC, and is hours of fun with a very dark undertone. If you like that sort of thing.

One of the endings is called- SPOILER- “Genocide Route”, which can only be achieved if you kill everyone without mercy.

Pretty depressing, huh? But I promise; it’s a good game!

Anyways, one of the lines in the song is, “Made your decision now you’re gonna have a bad time.”

This line particularly stuck with me because one of the characters you meet and befriend is a skeleton named Sans, along with his brother Papyrus. Sans is meant to be the comic relief of the game; cracking jokes and making horrible puns. When Sans gets upset or angry, he tells others that they will have a “bad time.”

Near the end of the game, once you’ve killed everyone in Undertale, your last opponent is Sans.

In short, a talking flower manipulates you to kill all your friends.

NWTB’s song Ashes is about how you became this monster who only kills for enjoyment, rather than trying to see the good in people.

I honestly thought this song would be used in more AMVs on Youtube, but I wanted it for myself and ended up buying it on iTunes instead.

Anyways, I’ve had this song on repeat for the past 3 weeks, put it as my ringtone for everyone in my contacts, and made it my alarm song.

I regret nothing!

To further explain how much I enjoy this song, another like is, “And in the end they’re gonna fall and fall to your hand.”

This line is a direct description of the manipulative, talking flower- who’s name is Flowey. He tried very hard to get you to kill everything and everyone, but you do have the option not to listen to him.

If you enjoy listening to songs that sound like they would be played at the end-credits of games, I recommend listening to NateWantsToBattle. He’s a really great artist, and I hope this review has intrigued you even a little bit to go have a listen.

My Mother is My Best Friend…Sometimes


UntitledI’m not a very sappy type of person. Not to my friends, not to my boyfriend of three years; Nobody. I think the only one I give any type of affection to is my dog, my boyfriend’s dogs, and my friend’s dog. Dogs are love, dogs are life.

Anyways, on my way home from school-my day goes from 7 AM to 6 PM every day- I stopped at Target to get a few things for myself. A gallon of sweet tea, a 4-pack of Starbucks chilled coffee, and a good-looking Hershey’s chocolate bar.

I can already feel your judgment from how much sugar I eat, and all I have to say is, “Treat yourself!”

After grabbing my items and getting back into my car, I came to the realization that I hadn’t called my mother in a few days. I like to keep in touch with her because, like most of us college students living on our own, I enjoy getting to know how to do this whole “adulting” thing. But I also realized that I don’t tell her how often I appreciate everything she does for me, and how much I love her.

So, I called her on her cell phone and asked how she was doing. She replied with the casual, “I’m fine” before I proceeded.

“I just wanted to call and tell you how much I love you, and I appreciate everything you do for me even though I don’t say it all too often.”

I thought we were having a sweet, mother-daughter moment.

Again, I’m not a sappy person.

My mother paused for a moment and asked, “What did you do?” as if I was about to confess to a crime I committed.

“Nothing! I just wanted to let you know that-”

“-Hold that thought. I’m gonna go get a glass of water.”

Mom! Really? I’m trying to be sentimental here, and you just ruined the moment! She cut me off as I was trying to express my appreciation. Mind you, I’m still in the Target parking lot, having a full-blown conversation with my mother about how she ruined the moment.

She thought it was funny, though, and I honestly thought it was, too. My mother has always been a little skeptical about the things I choose to do, but at least I know she has my back when something goes down. She knows I think of things without actually sitting on the topic and processing them, but she is definitely my biggest fan and number one supporter.

We continued our conversation as I drove home and had a nice, 40-minute-long chat about current events that have happened in the family and what I plan to do after school. She started telling me how a State job is good pay, and of course I said, “Oh! Money I can spend on cosplay, food, and video games. Cool!”

I could almost feel her give me that “mom look” through the phone. Terrifying. Pursed lips, risen brow, and that stare that sends shivers through your soul. It’s almost impossible to look her in the eye. You know what I mean!

I wish I had more time in my day to talk to my mother. She knows how busy I get during the weeks when softball and schoolwork dominate my life, and the little hour of time I have before she goes to bed is the only time I can sit down and chat.

Either way, any moment I can talk to my mom is never dull. It’s my time of relaxation and laughter when I’m stressed, and a way to pass the time if I need to rant.

Mom is always there, and I really do love and appreciate her for that.

Things that come in 3….


Image result for 3  3 has always been my favorite number. When I was younger and moved to Northern CA it snowed almost 2 feet on March 3rd. I was 6 and it was the first time I saw snow! It was amazing. We ran and played in the snow all day because there was NO SCHOOL, another bonus. The best bonus was that we could make snow ice cream ALL day long. AMAZING!! One of my best memories of childhood and it  all happened on 3/3.

There are other things that come in 3’s. The Famous Three Musketeers. Ready, Set, GO! Ready ! Aim! Fire! Hutt 1, Hutt 2…HIKE!! Me, Myself & I. The Father, Son and Holy Spirit. Three’s a crowd. Larry, Curly and Moe. The Mode Squad. Three’s Company. Peter, Paul & Mary. Earth, Wind and Fire. The 3 Little Pigs. The Three little Kittens, Goldilocks and the 3 Bears. The 3 Blind Mice. 3 Doors Down, Give Me 3 Steps, Brittney Spears-3,  Arcade Fire – “Neighborhood #3”, Bob Marley- “Three Little Birds”, Kenny Rogers – “Three Times A Lady”. The 3 Ring Circus. Rock, Paper, Scissors.BLT. Past, Present, Future. Man, Women and Child. Tripod, Tricycle, and Triangle. 3 Scoops of Ice Cream . Ear, Nose and Throat. 3 French Hens. 3 Sheets to the Wind. 3 Piece Suit. The Nina, Pinta and Santa Maria. 3 Legged Race. 3 Feet in a Yard. Up, 3-D, 3 Prime Colors Red, Yellow, Blue, A Clock has 3 Hands. A Season Has 3 Months. a Clover has 3 Leafs.a Trio. Triplets. ABC, CBS, NBC, FOX, TNT…ETC. The 3 of Hearts. The 3 of Spades. The 3 of Clubs. The 3 of Diamonds.The 3 Ball. 3 on a Dice. A Snowman’s Body.  3 Peas in a Pod, Up and Away. The Rule of Three – The rule suggests that when things come in threes, they are inherently funnier, more satisfying, or more effective than other numbers of things. Hear No Evil. See No Evil. Speak No Evil. Of the People, For the People, By the People. And Last but NOT Least… Beetlejuice, Beetlejuice, Beetlejuice.

Things always come in 3’s……

Have GOOD March the 3rd month of this year!!!

DJ Freedom Cares…..

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Musings on Money


Here’s a short write, meandering through the concept of money and success. By DJ Tray Squat.

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 “Here we stand, on the edge of unfamiliar territory. It has been charted before, many times, many ways. But, the tracks are all different sizes, tailored to each of the vehicles of their drivers. Most are long gone. None of the tracks are suited to me, they are too big, too small, too, long, too short, too deep, and too shallow. In the land of many paths, I fit none of them. I would scrape my flesh on the path with sticks, rocks, and dirt. I would get lost and suffocate in the track that is so deep, even the tallest had trouble navigating. I would still be here, needing a path, on the roads that end too soon. How to lengthen the short roads, or shorten the long ones? I don’t have the time to take the long route. Yet, I stand here, needing a way. Carving out my own path seems near impossible. Can I connect two roads? Fuse the tracks from your street with the sticks sticking out from another, and add in some of the depth of the path that travels underneath? What if it leads me nowhere? I can’t connect a path to a destination, without that destination’s approval. How, then, do I create a path just right for me, that will be just right for the destination I like? I want a helicopter to pick me up, pluck me from this precipice, and offer me any destination I wish. I could visit any number of paths and/or destinations and stay there as long as I like. I could provide assistance, from my perch, to some still forging a path. Those I know, those that have been in the same boat as me. I wouldn’t send a helicopter for each one, keeping in mind that there are a limited number of helicopters. But, I could provide insight, and opportunity to see their way through the options ahead of them. I could make the territory more familiar, and offer them a fast track to getting to their chosen destination. And I would take them all for rides in my helicopter, just for fun.”

 

Tracy is a dj with KSSU

One Gesture, Major World Impact


Brianna

Several years back there was a man that made his way toward the Golden Gate Bridge, pulled himself over the rail, and jumped falling 245 feet to his death. It was later discovered in the man’s suicide letter that, “if one person smiles at me on the way, I won’t jump.” Smiling is the easiest, and arguably most important gesture a human being can do. It can improve one’s health, help one excel in a their career, and even save lives.

If you don’t smile for others, at least smile for yourself. Smiling is proven to reduce stress levels, improve your immune system, and reduce pain as well. In a study conducted by University of Kansas, individuals who smile more frequently tend to have a lower heart rate during pressured situations opposed to those that don’t. Smiling is associated with comfort and acceptance which triggers the appropriate response to the brain which then sends endorphins (hormones that make you happy and energized) to the body and reduces the amount of cortisol, a hormone which is directly related to stress levels, and therefore makes an individual cope with stressors more effectively. When the endorphins are sent to your body, they also act as a supplemental pain killer. If you bang your toe and find a reason to smile afterwards, the hormones that your brain releases can actually numb or distract the pain for a short while…and you thought smiling wasn’t that big of a deal…

Moving on, smiling just might land you your dream job. Smiling not only displays confidence, but it also signifies trust. Studies show that we are more trustful of others when they smile and smile genuinely. Trust is an important part of social health when dealing with people, whether they be potential employers, loved ones or simply a stranger. Compared to the amount of individuals who don’t find it necessary to smile at others throughout their day are less likely to be chosen for a job offer or be approached for a promotion if the employer doesn’t undeniable trust them. Smiling makes you stand out in a sea of frowns which can truly get you noticed in the workforce for being a sociable, empathetic, confident, and trustworthy individual.

Lastly, smiling increases productivity. For all my fellow college students who are struggling to find a force stronger than procrastination (and whose tolerance for caffeine has hit a wall), I have a solution!! S – M – I – L – E…we’ve arrived in the future! But honestly, smiling has been proven to increase productivity while working on a given task. For those of you who work a desk job, don’t pass off the cat videos your co-workers send you as a waste of time. The little moments of laughter they bring are enough to keep an individual motivated for an increased amount of time therefore they’re able to work harder and get more accomplished.

Overall, I urge the importance of smiling not only to spread worldwide kindness, but also to show the benefits that lie beneath the surface. There are no consequences accompanied by a smile. I encourage any individual to smile as often and as regularly as they see fit so that they may improve their health, have the leg up in a competitive job market, and be a more productive/effective person.

Yes, there are personal benefits to showing off your pearly whites, however, let us not forget the most important reason to smile. You never know how much a single moment can impact someone’s life. A smile is not just a gesture, it’s an impression, a moment, a feeling you transfer to someone else. Take just a moment; go out of your way to make someone’s day special. Leave a random note saying “smile” or “you’re beautiful” where someone can find it. Smile at a stranger. Give money to a charity. Call a friend you haven’t talked to in years. Tell someone you like their shirt. Send a handwritten letter. A few seconds of your time could mean the world to someone. It could make them smile.

Someone’s life could be better off because of your smile; the world could be better off because of your smile.

Mia Kagianas

Beautiful Noise, Exquisite Tastes, and Creative Minds: The Complete TBD Fest 2015 Experience


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This past weekend TBD Fest has left a mark of music, art, design, food, and ideas in the city of Sacramento. The festival drew in thousands of diverse people, locals and visitors alike, to experience the unique Sacramento festival that is TBD.

To start off, this weekend was incredible. Everything from the acts to the food was something to look back on. The lineup fit the flow of the weekend; starting Friday off with bang, reaching a pinnacle of epicness on Saturday, and concluding with a sure sense of satisfaction on Sunday       (sorry for the tongue twister).

 

Festival Grounds

A vital part of any festival is to get a feel of where you will be for the next few days. The first thing to do is find a schedule and a map. They weren’t readily available, but the customer service tent had no problem handing out printed schedules (nothing too fancy, just a print out). Since there was no map, the only option was to explore the grounds.

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Having fun with the displays!

The grounds weren’t too vast and the layout was simple: a main stage on opposing sides with smaller stages near them. In between there was the “Rise + Create” space. A vendor village, complete with local vendors selling food, drinks, art, and clothing. All the food and drink being carefully crafted, the clothes being hand-made or hand-pressed, and beautiful pieces of art being created. This section of the festival truly shows the creative and tasteful minds of Sacramento. Near and around the “Rise + Create” space there were some awesome displays. Changing pillars of light, painted pyramids, murals, and the great display by PORTAL SAC. the perimeters of the grounds had the bars and food trucks. The festival even had it’s own giant ferris wheel (which all the proceeds from went to helping those recently affected by the California wildfires). There was a lot to see and do at TBD Fest besides watch the musical acts.

 

Demolicious Derby

If none of the musical acts were catching your attention or it was just too hot for you to be standing outside, then the “Demolicious Derby” was the place to go! It took place under a shaded tent with a nice patch of grass (I’m assuming so none of the dirt or dust flies into your food). It’s a cook off between two Sacramento chefs of the fine dining scene. They both have to use a certain ingredient. They also have to cook and serve out of a food truck. The food was completely free and completely delicious.

While waiting for the food, festival goers could watch the cooking from a live video feed screened on a large screen outside. The visuals and smells would make the audience even more hungry. Some moves such as adding the spice would make the audience “ooo” and “ahh.” A comedic MC would be hosting the event so it’s not just two dudes cooking food. Attendees would have to partake in both dishes and place their used forks in their respective choices. Both competitors were always good and humble chefs.

A little example of a cook off: both chefs had to use lamb. One made street tacos, but instead of a tortilla, he a used flattened and fried pork bun. The other made a greek style lamb poutine. Drooling yet? We were.

 

The Music

As mentioned  earlier, each day had a lineup that made a great flow for the weekend. Little disclaimer: I’m not really a big fan of EDM, so I didn’t catch much of the DJ sets.  

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Toro Y Moi

Friday was explosive. The first artist was the band, Cathedrals. With their chill, new wave sound, and heavy bass, Cathedrals gave the crowd something great to vibe to. Then I was able to catch Towkio, Chicago based rapper associated with Save Money and Vic Mensa. Even though the crowd didn’t know the words, Towkio and his DJ were able to pump up the crowd. Head back to the main stage and you would be able to catch the dreamy set of Toro Y Moi. This was one of the artists I was looking forward to watching the most, and they did not disappoint. Playing a good blend of the newest album, What

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Tyler, The Creator

for?, and their older stuff, the set was great. Ty Dolla $ign got the entire crowd dancing or jumping to his songs. The best part of his set was when he pulled out a bass and started groovin out (I didn’t know he could even play instruments). He was even able to stage dive into the crowd during the end of his set. The only EDM set I caught on Friday was some of was RL Grime’s. Playing a heavy trap set for the festival, he had everyone moving. The craziest crowd goes to the set of Sacramento native, Death Grips. The experimental industrial noise rap group made the biggest mosh pit of the weekend, bringing the first big dust cloud into the air. Being in the mosh, I breathed in a little too much dirt. The night ended with Tyler the Creator bringing  energy to the stage. Although he couldn’t bring the visuals he wanted, the set was still crazy. The crowd moshed, jumped, and sang along to the words. It wouldn’t be a Tyler the Creator set without his comedic side comments. The day really set the mood for the rest of the weekend.

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Chance the Rapper

Saturday was big. With the longest day of TBD Fest, there was a lot to do. Although the day was spent mostly walking around the grounds, eating, and hanging out, all the musical acts were great. Dark pop duo, ASTR, started the day off for me. They gave an electrifying performance with some heavy bass hits, melodic scales and licks, and some crazy dance moves. I even had the pleasure of interviewing them backstage (interview coming soon, really cool people). Joywave, an electronic indie band, drew one of the larger crowds for the small stages. Before playing, they took time to perfect their sound and it was worth it. The crowd was very responsive with each song and it was awesome to be apart of. Ratatat was one of my favorites for the weekend. The electric guitar duo had holograms and lasers, putting on one of the best visuals for the weekend. Porter Robinson had some nice visuals as well. Although I couldn’t really vibe to the music, he still put on a good show equipped with anime graphics and massive confetti shots. The crowd loved it. I was able to catch the tail end of Magic Man’s set on the opposing small stage. Although there weren’t that many people watching the set, they still gave it their all and ended with their hit, Paris. Chance the Rapper was the main act I was looking forward to for the whole weekend. The set was amazing. He came with his full band, Donnie Trumpet and The Social Experiment, which made for a much fuller sound. The visuals weren’t top notch, but it didn’t matter because the music and energy put out from the performance was, to me, the best for this weekend. Sing alongs, jumping around, crowd participation, amazing trumpet solos, it had it all. Even though he admit to go out of order of their intended set due to excitement (Chance would become a father two days later) they still made it the best. Saturday had something big for fans of all different music genres.

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Tears For Fears

Sunday was a great way for the weekend to wind down. Up and coming rap/r&b artist (who recently made a song with Kanye West) Post Malone put on a good five song set to start off our day. Although he has blown up due to the success of his hit song, White Iverson, Post Malone still kept it humble, and kept it entertaining. He even performed White Iverson again for his closer, having the crowd sing the entire last verse to closer. After, we were walking and on the nearby small stage, this band O began to play. They were able to keep us and the others for their whole set. They’re an indie band from San Francisco, do check them out. I was sad to have missed Dr. Dog and A Place to Bury Strangers due to attending a Demolicious Derby, but I heard the sets were amazing. Right when we got to A Place to Bury Strangers, the lead singer had just smashed his guitar to end his set. Sad to have missed that, but it was on to the 90’s alt rock band, Dinosaur Jr.! Although they are getting old, they can still play flawlessly. With great

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Madeon

tunes and heart reaching solos, Dinosaur Jr. had a high-caliber set. After, Black Lips took the smaller stage. This goofy garage rock outfit from Georgia had a really fun set. After some jokes and moshing ensued, it was time for the OG (an older act, usually more famous in the 80’s)  headliner (every festival has to have one amiright?), Tears for Fears! Watching their set was like jumping back into the past, a time where most of the people attending TBD were either not alive or too young to go to a concert. Of course, the crowd sang along to classic hits such as Everybody Wants to Rule the World and their closer, Shout. They even surprised the audience with a slower yet full version of Creep by Radiohead. Madeon electrified the crowd as the last EDM performance of the weekend. I had to jump around a few times for that performance. I wasn’t able to stay, but I heard and read that crowd favorite Chromeo properly wrapped up TBD Fest with their funky tunes.

 

Closing Remarks

2015-09-22 04.01.12Overall, TBD Fest is a must-go for anyone in Sacramento, the surrounding Northern California area, or anyone in the world that wants to have a good time. Although not as big as famous festivals such as Cochella, TBD Fest is able to provide some of the top acts in music today in a comfortable yet enthralling environment. Everyone from the acts to the volunteers to the workers to the security to everyone else helped make this weekend what it was. It wasn’t just  about the music, but about the local artistic minds and tastemakers coming together to bring entertainment to Sacramento. It’s exactly what this city needs, a positive driving force in today’s creative culture.

 

 

Check out our mini Instagram Vlogs of the Festival!

If you liked this article, be sure to tune into KSSU.com on Wednesdays from 6:00pm-7:00pm for the 30/30! 30 minutes of music followed by 30 minutes of talk with me, Jerel Labson! 

Also be sure to follow my personal blog, jmbldup.wordpress.com!  

 

“Matriarch” by Veil of Maya Album Review


 

Veil-of-Maya-Matriarch-artwork-600x600So here I am, chilling in my philosophy class before the professor shows up. I whip out my iPod and check out the channels I am subscribed too. I mostly use YouTube for finding new music and cool skate videos. Browsing through the videos, I noticed that Sumerian Records put out the whole new Veil of Maya album “Matriarch” and I about exploded. I had to sit for an hour and fifteen minutes anticipating the awesomeness of VoM. Luckily, I only stayed in class for about twenty minutes because class today was an optional Final Exam Study session. Who needs to study for finals anyways? I’ll just wait until the day before my finals.

So I had already heard a few songs from the Album and had already been in love. The rest of the album was fantastic as well. I did not even need to listen to the entirety of each song before clicking to the next and welcoming in frission (where you get goosebumps from good music). There was the usual VoM stuff; technical math-core (complicated song structure), drop tuned guitars, and ominous background sound effects. VoM threw in some new stuff such as clean vocals (in comparison to the low gutturals from the “Common Man’s Collapse” Album), guitar melodies in the higher registry, and an overall album theme, hence the name “Matriarch”. Before the album was released, my favorite of the leaked songs was Mikasa, which also had a music video. There was heavy breakdowns, awesome never-before heard clean vocals, and an overall empowering feeling brought forth by the entire band.

Looking at the track listing, each song is named after Matriarchs or powerful women, both fictional and non-fictional. In one of the YouTube comments, someone even mentioned that one of the song names is a very threatening character from an action anime. I took the Youtuber’s word and moved on to the music. I will have to say that my favorite song, other than the leaked ones, would have to be “Daenerys”. I have no idea where the name Daenerys comes from, but it did not spell check me on Microsoft Word, so it is legit. Anyways, the song starts out really light with some nice moving around on the guitar. It then goes into a two-measure guitar solo before the vocalist pops in and the song takes a more serious turn. With some power chords blasting right into a heavy breakdown, Veil of Maya shows off what they are known for. Right after are some clean vocals from their new vocals, which were pretty impressive by the way. The chorus is repeated throughout with some technical instrumentals in the background, before closing the song with a guitar solo build up to more cleans and a mini breakdown. Finally, a guitar playing a riff in the higher register ends out the song.

Most of the time I listen to music on YouTube except for when I really like a whole album, which I purchase to support the band. Veil of Maya, I’m going to support you and buy your new album “Matriarch” when I get home tonight.

Thanks for reading everyone!

I may or may not have a show during finals week due to, well, finals. However, check out www.kssu.com and listen to other DJs do their stuff!

Much Love,

DJGingerbeard