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Concert Reviews

Jonah Parzen-Johnson at Lilypad

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Not just a storyteller in song, Parzen-Johnson’s warm banter further connected him with the crowd. Before the next song, Jonah said he started sleepwalking at the age of four, keeping that pattern for the next five years. His dad would grab him by the shoulders and give a shake, saying, “Jonah, you’re asleep!”

Naturally, Jonah got defensive, insisting he wasn’t asleep, because you get surly after someone wakes you up. After five years, Jonah stopped sleepwalking. Yet he’d wake up in the middle of the night, and his parents, who’d had enough, wanted a “self-soothing child,” equipping Jonah with tools to get back to sleep. He’d listen to a cassette called Beethoven Lives Upstairs. When minding him once, Jonah’s grandmother tried to turn on the tape, but managed to record herself saying, “I think it’s working now,” which definitely wasn’t a part of Beethoven Lives Upstairs.

Jonah’s mother told him, “Just shut your eyes” when he couldn’t sleep—Jonah told the crowd that when you hear something over again as a kid, that gets ingrained into your own values; that is the basis of “If You Can’t Sleep, Just Shut Your Eyes,” a song with a jazzy sax opener that built into a crystalline cacophony and throbbing undertones.

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Concert Reviews

Speedy Ortiz “riiiiise above and gliiiiiide away” at The Sinclair

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The Sinclair was a packed house Wednesday night for the Speedy Ortiz CD release party; as a hometown gig for the Northampton, MA-based band, kinetic warmth buzzed through friends and fans alike as Sadie Dupuis and crew played their freshly-release Foil Deer track-by-track.

What’s a party without some guests, though? That’s where Krill and Mitski come in.

Krill kicked off the night with some tracks from A Distant Fist Unclenching, other goods from Lucky Leaves. Lead singer/bassist Jonah Furman brought to mind early (read: good) Billy Corgan, which I’m not sure he will appreciate. But I think he’ll appreciate this: I couldn’t stop laughing because then I kept thinking about Marilyn Manson telling Billy Corgan that he looked like Charlie Brown.

Opening with “Theme from Krill,” the Boston trio has a knack for rhythm and melody that burrows into your brain. The dreamy bleakness of “Purity of Heart.”  The discordant garage rock and hiccupping guitar and warbly Scooter-ness of “Foot.” Krill’s sound is a good, comfy noise that keeps you wiggling and all that good stuff. Be sure to catch the band at Boston Calling.

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Concert Reviews

Years & Years at Royale Boston

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During winter storm Juno, UK electro pop group Years & Years were forced to cancel the first show of their two-night stint in New York City back in January. After the snow finally melted, they made the rounds again this past March, playing several shows in California, South by Southwest before finally landing in Boston.

Due to popular demand, the show was moved from The Sinclair to the Royale in downtown’s Theater District.

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Concert Reviews

Hundred Waters Entrance The Sinclair

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Suno Deko, Mitski, and Hundred Waters wove a tapestry of atmosphere Saturday night–eclectic, punky, and entrancing, it was all a dream that you didn’t want to wake up from. The Sinclair was not short on ambience in any capacity.

One-man outfit Suno Deko, hailing from Atlanta, captured his loops one by one, patiently re-recording when something was off by a hair. Known in civilian life as David Courtright, Suno Deko interspersed his experimental pop with dashes of dry humor, sharing with the crowd that the folks in Montreal were pretty chatty during his set and that they didn’t really seem to think they were like the Wildlings north of the Wall. Supporting his 2014 EP Thrown Color, Courtwright’s material ranged from aquatic melancholy to static delirium. The performance being Suno Deko’s last opening for Hundred Waters on the tour, it was an amazing final night.

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