Lane 8 “Little By Little” Tour Review


As deep house and trance events are few and far between in Sacramento, Lane 8’s Little by Little Tour was a refreshing event to grace Ace of Spades on Sunday, March 25th. The tour instructions told goers to leave their cell phones out of the event, and to simply be in the moment with everyone in attendance. The deep beats and medium sized crowd ensured that possibility. Thus, because of the simplicity of the beats and lack of visual records, it created an atmosphere that is unlike many of the tours going on in 2018.

The ticket to the event rightly read “This never happened”, as an ode to the days when you could go to clubs and completely release yourself to the simple, singular deep beats in front of you without the inane distractions in your pocket. It truly does take a certain level of concentration to release yourself to one moment, and then another, and then another. This does happen however, and to continue dancing to Little by Little was a transcendental experience that was different from other genres of EDM. It beckons you to put all of yourself into one beat at a time and to let it take you somewhere you can let go. In accomplishing this, Little by Little is uncomplicated in its’ production yet entices the viewer to be bathed in its simplicity. The ethereal and ambient additions in his music make it something of a dream world when you catch yourself entranced by every single beat. His set included his newest album Little by Little, along with a cover of Take a Chance by Flume and his album single No Captain (ft. POLICA). However, the crux of the night came when he played his cover of Innerbloom by Rufus Du Sol. In Lane 8’s Cover, the listless and ambient yearning of the original Innerbloom, is made to feel as if there is a happier meaning to the song.

If you see Lane 8’s Tour near you at any point this year: go. If he is playing a set at your next festival, go, because you won’t experience another set like it soon. It will remind you that the power of concentration and release is cleansing in a world where externalities are always infecting our well-being. To take a moment, and forget what it means to be seen by others, reminds us that even the singular moments we experience in everyday life can be enriching, if only we let them.

BANGTAN BOYS – Highlight Tour (San Francisco)


image1

Hello All!!!

Last Tuesday, I was FINALLY able to see one of my all-time favorite KPOP groups, Bangtan Boys (BTS) in San Francisco!!! I was so sad when I was not able to go to their “The Red Bullet” concert because it sold out in literally 2 minutes! *CRIESSS* TGM Entertainment (Organizer) didn’t tell us many details about the event besides that there would be a performance, autograph session, hi-touch, and group photo. I’m actually not into the members as most fans were because I actually love BTS for their music and not the members, but my dear friend, who’s life ultimate favorite group is BTS, was the one who bought me the VIP tickets and at first I was hesitant because I didn’t care about all the perks, I just wanted to see them perform. The only people I was excited to meet were Suga, Rap Monster, and J- Hope, because their skills blows my mind!

This is a blurb of my experience

Autograph session:

After picking up our wristband at Holiday Inn, we had to walk back over to Nourse Theater. There were two opposite lines that wrapped around the theater on both sides, one VIP, and the other for general admission. As I entered the door for the autograph session, THEY WERE FREAKiNG RIGHT THERE! Right in the front, sitting at a long table and smiling beautifully to the fans as they signed their posters. I freaked out a little, OK I lied, a lot, because I really didn’t expect to have any feeeelz when I saw them what-so-ever, like I said, I was more into their music, but just seeing them in real life evoked all these emotions. Like I kept jumping up and down because I was so excited, I was probably one of the oldest one there and the least calm. HAH! …I wish I was cool sometimes…

Going down the line with each one as they signed my poster, they were all quiet, it’s probably the language barrier. They all look even more gorgeous in up-close, like HOW IS EVERYONE’S SKIN SO CLEAR?! What product do you guys use?! I just told each one I love them, but when I reached Suga, I said, “I love you,” a bit more shyly because he’s my favorite. He smiled and did a double take at my arm and pointed at it with his pen and FREAKIN said, “Nice tattoo” IN THE MOST-COOLEST TONE EVER!!!!! You guys don’t even know how much I squealed! (Of course, only after I stepped out the door). This fool, he is the “cool-laid back about any one” guy in the group!!! Like, for him to say that to me, ME! This one right here! *points finger at myself* IT. WAS. WOW. I even posted what he said on Tumblr and someone actually even asked, “What tattoo do you have for him to say that to you?” Because yes yall, it was LIKE. THAT. Yall get the drift. Ok, i’m getting all excited again…. *inhale, exhale* On to the next…

Performance:

I came in with the expectation of 6-8 songs. They only performed 4! 4! *pouts* They were great live, but I just expected more songs. They performed N.O., DOPE, Boy in Luv and I Need U. I can seriously watch them dance and sing forever. However after the last song, they just said an insincere thank you and a quick bye and just got off the stage. Most performer would say some sort of speech, but they didn’t. EVERYONE thought it was a joke and were confused until they turned on the lights in the auditorium and asked everyone to line up for the hi-touch. That was so weird…

Hi-Touch / Group Photo

This was probably the most hectic because all 1000+ people get hi-touch. What bugged me a little was that they changed from 8 people per photo to 25 people per photo! It was less intimate. The line took forever, probably an hour, but I didn’t mind, I was able to talk to people in line around me and I swear almost every KPOP concert I’ve been to, the fans are sweetest and friendliest! I mean there are fandoms who are rude, but that’s another story. So in the end I was able to high five them all and take a group picture! Heck, to me that’s awesome in itself. (But what Suga said, takes the cake!)

All in all:

It was an awesome experience for me! Fans were mad at TGM because the whole event was super unorganized. People didn’t have their seats, because they gave out double seat numbers, lines were screwy, and a couple of out-of-hand fans. But hey, the organizer were the one who brought them here! International fans aren’t as lucky as Asian fans, so I’m grateful for the opportunity to be able to meet them and watch them perform live. I can’t wait until their next real concert, I’ll be sure not to miss it next time!

DJ RONAROCKSS

Ace of Spades: Venue For Great Live Experiences


So seeing the Dirty Heads live marked my eighth time going to Ace of Spades in Sacramento, Ca. Quite honestly… I am not sick of that place at all! Each experience was great and left me with no problem coming back for more. I’ve been to a wide variety of shows over at Ace of Spades, from a small crowd to sold out, hip-hop to rock, heavy to chill, indie to punk; you get the picture. Now, three and a half years and eight shows later, I want to share why Ace of Spades will always hold a special place in my heart.

5. The Layout

venue_floor

Ace of Spades is essentially set up like a large disfigured diamond. With the main stage up against the corner, they utilize the rest of the floor space for good use. Facing the stage, on the left side is a 21+ section, for people that want to sit down. I haven’t been to that section due to my 21st birthday being in November, but from what I heard, it still provides a great view for those that want to be on that side. The second 21+ section is in the back, elevated on a second story. From back there, you have a bar and an overview of the whole venue. Facing the stage, on the right hand side, there’s a bar open to all. This is for the regular drinks and even the food items. A little overpriced on the food and drink items, but then again, what venue isn’t? The floor space is very open, great for crowds to go crazy and mosh or vibe to the music and chill. In the sold out shows that I went to and didn’t partake in a mosh pit, I had enough personal  space to myself. The stage itself is big enough to accommodate large bands and groups. There’s lights up top facing the stage and lights on the stage, which make for some great light shows. This might not seem like a big deal, but the bathrooms are big, and they’re always clean (at least for the times I needed to use it). The design itself is just great, with chandeliers hanging from the ceilings and red walls, the venue is appealing to the eye.

4. The Sound

aceI’m not sure if there is an in house sound person, or if every artist had their own, but Ace of Spades has been able to provide great sound either way. With some venues i’ve been to, the voice cannot be heard over the music. That or there was too much bass (I know there are some bass enthusiasts out there, but really, too much is too much). Over at Ace of Spades, the sound has always been crisp and well balanced, no matter where I was standing. Maybe I was just lucky enough to go to all the shows with great sound, but I never had a bad experience.

3. The Artists / Acts / Names

What’s great about Ace of Spades are the artists and bands that they bring to Sacramento. Without Ace of Spades, the only big artists that would come through Sacramento while on tour would be the big stadium performers, but since there’s Ace of Spades, some pretty big names have come to hit Ace. Bands such as Two Door Cinema Club, AWOL Nation, Motion city Soundtrack, Rebelution and  many more have come through. Rappers such as Snoop Dogg, Tech N9ne, Childish Gambino, Schoolboy Q, and many more has performed at Ace also. Even big random acts came to Ace of Spades such as Backstreet Boys and The Fray. It doesn’t stop either, more bands and artists will be hitting the stage soon. Just keep up with their calendar on their website!

2. Intimacy

Processed with VSCOcam with t1 preset

I hope you guys understand the context I’m using this word for. The venue is smaller than most, with high quality and big artists. Which means, no matter where you stand in the venue, you will always be close to your favorite artist! Even if you’re farther away from the stage, you’re still closer to them if you were to see the same artist at a music festival or stadium. Even then, you get to shove your way through to the front (even though that is frowned upon) if you’re a huge fan. No paid seating, no overpriced close area, every time, it’s general admission. Think about your favorite artist up close and performing your favorite song. It’s a great feeling. And the pictures/video can turn out great!

1. The… Crowd?

This might seem like a stretch and super subjective, but the crowds have always been great, and probably will keep being great. For each show that I went to, almost the whole crowd was into the show and artist, vibing out and singing along. You still have the stragglers that just stand there and do nothing, but that’s unavoidable. If you were to go to a stadium concert, you would have a good %40 of attendees not be real fans of the artists. Some would go, just to go. They would attend since it’s such a big event and they can put it all over social media.  Which means that some people have the nerve to be on their phone most of the time because they don’t really care of the live music going on in front of them. That or you’re a parent of a fan girl and/or boy. This may also be the case of attending a large music festival. You may be seeing your favorite artist live while you’re far away near people who don’t even know who is on stage. Why have all of that, when you can be close to the artist and be surrounded by fans who love them just as much as you do. It’s a great feeling, and Ace of Spades provides just that. Due to it being a smaller venue, the crowd who usually buys the tickets and sell out the show, are huge fans. At least, that’s how it was for me all the times I’ve gone..

So bottom line, if you’re near Sacramento, go to a show at Ace of Spades! If you live in Sacramento and haven’t gone yet, then well, shame on you. If Ace of Spades ever announces a new show you really would want to go to, do not hesitate and buy the tickets right away!

 

Jerel is a DJ with KSSU he plays the music and stuff.

Earth Day at Sac State


green earth

So as you may or may not be aware, Earth Day is quickly approaching. April 22nd, to be exact, which lands on a Tuesday, but for whatever reasons Sacramento State has deemed worthy they have decided to celebrate it on the 17th which lands on a Thursday; obvious bright side is that we will get two Earth Days this way, which may inspire some people to go out and make a difference. I do have some bad news, if you learned everything you know about Earth Day from a Pauli Shore movie, it isn’t going to be like Bio-dome.

[Read more…]

Album Review: “The Masters of Ceremony EP” by Zion-I


Masters-of-Ceremony-EamonA year and almost six months removed from ShadowBoxing and the Shadowboxing tour, Zion-I returns with a small EP, the Masters of Ceremonies. It is, based off what I read, suppose to be a part of a series of a greater project – a string of EPs. These five tracks are all fresh. One of the most refreshing things about Zion-I is their constant ability of putting out conscious hip hop with fresh beats. Every time they release music, it does justice to the genre and should remind everyone of the good in hip hop beyond the stereotypical “booty shaking,” “twerking,” etc. that we hear often today.

Many of these tracks bring back an old school feel that reminds one of the good, ole days of hip hop. Zumbi, as always, does a great job with his flows through all these tracks.  And Amplive brings all the bumpin’ beats you have expected from him.  For those needing a jumping point into this EP, I recommend listening to the track “Supreme” first – the first track of the five on The Masters of Ceremony EP. Danger Zone slaps hard and features 1-O.A.K, is another track I’d easily recommend off the EP. And lastly, Masters of Ceremony is another good track to listen to. [Read more…]

The Acacia Strain: New Album and Upcoming Tour


The+Acacia+Strain+acaciastrain_detail

My current favorite death metal band, formed in 2001 and hailing from Chicopee, Massachusetts is The Acacia Strain. They have a real primal feel, great for when you want to listen to something very loud and very angry, their music is somewhat similar to Six Feet Under. If this is your first time hearing of them I’d suggest starting off with their album Wormwood, and the song Beast in particular was what got me hooked on them. It’s rare that I’m disappointed in how loud my stereo get’s, honestly it really never happens except when I play this band. Maybe I should get a new one that goes to “11.”

[Read more…]

Interview – Fredrik Åkesson of Opeth


Fredrik Åkesson is the lead guitarist for the progressive death metal band Opeth. He is also known for his guitar work in numerous projects that include Arch Enemy, Tailsman, Krux, and Tiamat.

Åkesson is currently on tour with Opeth promoting the band’s latest album Heritage (which I was a fan of).

Here is a phone conversation we had in which we discussed the current tour with Mastodon, Mikael’s recent injury, the dark lyrical content of the band he had when he was nine, his favorite beers, and more. He even divulged the band’s post-festival season tour plans, although he is unsure if he was supposed to or not.

Listen to the full interview with clips from Åkesson’s work after the jump…

[Read more…]

Interview – Doc Coyle of God Forbid


Here is a phone conversation I had with Doc Coyle, the guitarist and backing vocalist of the New Jersey melodic-thrash metal band, God Forbid.

We discuss the origins of God Forbid and thier new album Equilibrium. We also chat about the band’s upcoming trek on the Tresspass America Festival Tour, the “Djent” label, his not-so guilty love of a certain Canadian band many people dislike, and we touch on an upcoming project of his that is not very metal.

All that and more can be heard after the jump…

[Read more…]

The Second Coming


The Second Coming: Boy Bands in the Recent Music Era
By: Josue “Josh” Alvarez Mapp (a.k.a. DJ Mappquest)

“Back in the day” even though those days weren’t so long ago, I remember all the girls when I was in middle school and high school talking about N’Sync (pictured left), as well as the Backstreet Boys, 98 Degrees, and O-Town.  For those who were asleep in the late 90’s and early years of the new millennium, these groups are what is called “boy bands.”  When I say every girl was talking about them, I really don’t mean that, but when so many people in so many classes were talking about them, it almost seems like every girl was.  The reason these names may sound distant and unknown is because these groups don’t have the same clout they use to.  N’Sync broke up and Justin Timberlake decided to do his own thing.  Many laughed and thought he was crazy but he made it happen.  The Backstreet Boys did tour last year alongside New Kids on the Block (another “boy band”) but “boys” could hardly describe who they are now. [Read more…]

Wale Ambition tour in Sacramento


On November 23rd, 2011, one of hip hop’s brightest stars arrived in Sacramento at the Sunrise Event Center and didn’t disappoint at all. Although the promoters who hosted the concert didn’t handle everything as well as planned, it nevertheless was a great show and if you didn’t get a chance to see Wale perform, you missed out.

Before Wale showed up, there was an artist by the name of Black Cobain that I feel should be mentioned. He had a good set and certainly caught my ear and will be looking forward to new music from him in the future. He even freestyled at the end of his set that raised eyebrows and got plenty of people to pay attention. After the show, I made an effort to find out if he has any music available and it turns out that he dropped Young Black and Gifted mixtape earlier this year. I’m going to have to take a listen to that when I can to have a final judgement on his musical abilities. As of right now, Black Cobain is someone to watch for who hails from the DMV region (much like Wale). [Read more…]