When Carnival rolls around, the musical culture of New Orleans spills out of the clubs, schools and backyards into the streets. This year the diversity of bands, marching clubs and dance troupes was truly staggering. Taken together these groups represent almost every aspect of our shared musical heritage. This week I took to the curb to capture some candid moments from this unique practice. Some of my favorite groups are represented here including The Roots of Music and The 9th Ward Marching Band. The best thing about these performances is that they provide the soundtrack against which the memories of Mardi Gras are formed. I have long maintained the best part of Mardi Gras is the hours spent standing around leisurely with close friends. Against the lure of Carnival, the demands of our highly scheduled lives begin to melt away and we have a chance to reconnect with those closest to us. These are the moments that make this time of year special, and they are without fail accompanied by these unique sounds of New Orleans.
Unknown Mortal Orchestra
Tonight Unknown Mortal Orchestra will stop through Republic. The band is touring on their excellent release from last year Multi-Love. In addition to his songwriting and singing duties, Ruben Nielson took complete control over this record producing, mixing and engineering the whole project himself. There is a complexity to the sound on this album that eclipses anything that Unknown Mortal Orchestra has done to this point. I had the pleasure of seeing Nielson and company at Bonnaroo last summer and they were easily one of the highlights of the festival. Tonight you have a chance to see one of the best bands touring at the hight of their abilities, don’t miss out. Check out my photos from Roo below.
To Do This Week
Tonight check out Unknown Mortal Orchestra at Republic. Friday Funk Monkey will be at the Maple Leaf. On Saturday Wavves and Best Coast will play at the Joy Theatre. Sunday drop by Gasa Gasa for a special tribute to David Bowie. On Monday Warbringer and Enforcer will be at Siberia. Wednesday Beacon will be at the Hi-Ho Lounge.
To Listen This Week
There is a ton of great new music to listen to this week.
New Thundercat track via Youtube
Stream Mint Julep’s new record via CoS
Sufjan Stevens has released a live video supporting his excellent “Carrie & Lowell” via Youtube
Check out Sam Beam’s new project Love Letter for Fire via CoS
Mogwai have released a new track “Ether” via Soundcloud