Category Archives: TVD Washington, DC

TVD Recommends: The DC Record Store Crawl After Party with Good Old War at POV Live, 8/6

“Honestly my whole record collection is borrowed from my Dad. When I got a turntable I raided his records for any album he had on vinyl that I liked. He let me take them under the condition that I return them at some point…”Keith Goodwin, Good Old War

So, the Record Store Crawl that we put on your radar hitting 7 cities across that nation this summer? Well, the DC Crawl on August 6th—sold out. (Quickly.) But, there’s a silver lining friends. The Official After Crawl Party with a performance by Good Old War (who are riding shotgun on the DC Crawl itself) still has plenty of room for you and your vinyl cohorts to attend—and it’s FREE.

Paste magazine premiered Good Old War’s new video for “Never Gonna See Me Cry” back in June which “depicts a dapper dude having increasingly bad luck during an otherwise pleasant stroll while the band looks on” as they noted. (We promise you a far better time on 8/6, however.)

RSVP for the Official DC Record Store Crawl After Party with a performance by Good Old War right here. It’s free—but you do need to register to attend!

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Play Something Good with John Foster

The Vinyl District’s Play Something Good is a weekly radio show broadcast from Washington, DC.

Featuring a mix of songs from today to the 00s/90s/80s/70s/60s and giving you liberal doses of indie, psych, dub, post punk, americana, shoegaze, and a few genres we haven’t even thought up clever names for just yet. The only rule is that the music has to be good. Pretty simple.

Hosted by John Foster, world-renowned designer and author (and occasional record label A+R man), don’t be surprised to hear quick excursions and interviews on album packaging, food, books, and general nonsense about the music industry, as he gets you from Jamie xx to Liquid Liquid and from Courtney Barnett to The Replacements. The only thing you can be sure of is that he will never ever play Mac DeMarco. Never. Ever.

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TVD Live: Bryan Ferry and LP at the Lincoln Theatre, 7/23

PHOTOS: RICHIE DOWNS | In a year that began with the death of David Bowie and was followed by a seeming succession of crushing musical losses, it becomes more important to cherish the influential figures we’re still lucky to have among us.

If it’s hard to think of Bryan Ferry as endangered, it’s simply because, at an astonishing 70, he still has much of the cool élan, style and verve he had when he led Roxy Music two generations ago. With only some grey flecks amid his full head of hair and a stance that would allow him to retain a James Bond role had he been ever been so cast, he seems to have lost only a tad of his upper register in the first of two shows at the Lincoln Theatre in D.C. Saturday night.

In those moments he threw it to the soulful vocalists who bolstered his reedy voice throughout, Fonzi Thornton and Bobbie Gordon (who did that high-flying solo to close “Avalon”). With a wealth of classics as well as surprising choices from his Roxy days as well as from his solo career, the show was more an overview than an attempt to sell his most recent album. As such, there were just three selections from the sturdy Avonmore from 2014—two to start the 21-song set and another not long after.

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Play Something Good with John Foster

The Vinyl District’s Play Something Good is a weekly radio show broadcast from Washington, DC.

Featuring a mix of songs from today to the 00s/90s/80s/70s/60s and giving you liberal doses of indie, psych, dub, post punk, americana, shoegaze, and a few genres we haven’t even thought up clever names for just yet. The only rule is that the music has to be good. Pretty simple.

Hosted by John Foster, world-renowned designer and author (and occasional record label A+R man), don’t be surprised to hear quick excursions and interviews on album packaging, food, books, and general nonsense about the music industry, as he gets you from Jamie xx to Liquid Liquid and from Courtney Barnett to The Replacements. The only thing you can be sure of is that he will never ever play Mac DeMarco. Never. Ever.

Read More »

Posted in TVD Washington, DC | Leave a comment

Play Something Good with John Foster

The Vinyl District’s Play Something Good is a weekly radio show broadcast from Washington, DC.

Featuring a mix of songs from today to the 00s/90s/80s/70s/60s and giving you liberal doses of indie, psych, dub, post punk, americana, shoegaze, and a few genres we haven’t even thought up clever names for just yet. The only rule is that the music has to be good. Pretty simple.

Hosted by John Foster, world-renowned designer and author (and occasional record label A+R man), don’t be surprised to hear quick excursions and interviews on album packaging, food, books, and general nonsense about the music industry, as he gets you from Jamie xx to Liquid Liquid and from Courtney Barnett to The Replacements. The only thing you can be sure of is that he will never ever play Mac DeMarco. Never. Ever.

Read More »

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TVD Live: Bob Dylan with Mavis Staples at Wolf Trap, 7/6

I went to the second of two stops by Bob Dylan and his band at Wolf Trap in Virginia Wednesday, thinking maybe that he’d change up the set a bit from opening night. That was the case for decades, of course, when he’d switch up roughly a third of the show with more unusual offerings on subsequent nights at a venue. But as he informed me in the very first song of a set that changed not one bit from the night before, or the night before that, “Things Have Changed.”

That Dylan at 75 is playing pretty much the exact same set at every stop in the last couple of years is just as noteworthy as him mixing it up for all those years. Are we to believe he’s arrived at last at the perfect arrangement of songs in his shows?

At least it is one that has at last fully caught up to his recorded output, with a good portion of the titles drawn from his dreamy, unexpectedly compelling reading of old love songs on the albums Shadows in the Night and Fallen Angels, in which he clears up his voice enough to croon the old melodies, fraught with heartbreak and regret.

Indeed, a couple of songs were ones that weren’t even on Shadows in the Night or Fallen Angels—“I Could Have Told You” and “That Old Feeling” (which replaced a third unreleased song on the tour, “How Deep is the Ocean?”)—indicating that his hankering for the past may result in a third album in the trilogy (unless you count the album of Christmas standards as his first such foray).

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TVD Live: Paul Simon
at Wolf Trap, 6/28

PHOTOS: BRYAN MURPHY, COURTESY OF WOLF TRAP | It was about the middle of Paul Simon’s set at the Wolf Trap Tuesday (6/28) when the news alert came across phones—Simon told the New York Times he was ready to quit music altogether making these final set of concerts, which close out this weekend at Forest Hills, in Queens, his last U.S. dates. (He still has a fall European tour to do).

That only made the sprightly show in the Northern Virginia woods one to cherish more. By now, Simon combines the most crowd pleasing of his era, dabbling with world music with nuggets from his earlier solo career, and even a couple from the duo that preceded it all. At the same time, he’s got some pretty smart new material which you can’t say he’s exactly shoving down anyone’s throat—he only played three songs from the current Stranger to Stranger.

At 74, his voice is remarkable—clear and evocative and able to replicate the notes from decades ago though he declined mostly to do that. Not because he couldn’t reach notes, but because he enjoys still playing around with the music, stretching a line, giving it a bluesy turn, or otherwise keeping the show from being a nostalgic singalong, which he could have very easily done.

Indeed, ripples of applause greeted the enduring melody of the Incan pipes of “El Condor Pasa” but it was just played as an instrumental, leading into the slightly more obscure but even more welcome “Duncan,” which has its own, just as lovely counter melody (using those same pipes).

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TVD Live: Pere Ubu
at the Rock and Roll
Hotel, 6/24

Since reactivating Pere Ubu in 1987 David Thomas and his cohorts have kept the focus consistently forward and in the process have accumulated one of rock’s more impressive discographies. In 2015 Fire Records began to collect Ubu’s early material into vinyl box sets, a smart maneuver helping to introduce those canonical works to a younger audience. The Coed Jail! tour finds Ubu’s current lineup tackling selections from 1975-1982, and on June 24 they brought the avant-garage to Washington, DC’s Rock and Roll Hotel with inspired precision.

As one of the busier active veteran units there was really little worry Pere Ubu’s live excursion into the back catalogue would be tentative or out-of-sync. Furthermore, as their generous yet efficient set unfurled from inside the intimate environs of the Rock and Roll Hotel, the assurances that Coed Jail! was something other than a mere greatest hits tour proved right on the money. Instead, the tour sheds contemporary light upon an era of enduring relevance, with Ubu conjuring a wild, utterly human sound.

The evening began with a short and loose appearance by Cleveland’s Obnox. Featuring ex-Bassholes and This Moment in Black History drummer Lamont “Bim” Thomas, for this current endeavor he plays guitar, sings, and in a maneuver sure to catch a few newcomers off guard, raps over a foundation of looped amp noise and live drums.

The majority of Obnox’s set, which found the duo joined on a pair of occasions by Ubu drummer Steve Mehlman, was raw, bluesy garage punk likely to please fans of assorted acts on the In the Red label. Plus, the non-gimmicky dives into hip hop actually brought to mind the merger of white hickdom and urban blackness found in Thomas’ Bassholes associate Don Howland’s work in The Gibson Bros. However, the execution was quite different as Thomas evinced a real talent for rapping.

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TVD Live: Grace Potter
at the 9:30 Club, 6/23

REVIEW: NATHAN PAYNE | Six months after her stellar performance prior to the massive snow storm of 2016, Grace Potter touched down at the 9:30 Club once again to deliver another galactic jam session. For two nights in a row, she blasted crowds with her undeniable energy and mind-bending riffs before returning to the road.

The night kicked off with Con Brio, a badass, funk factory bursting with rhythm and soul. Brass stacked on bass laid the framework for Grace Potter to melt the stage. A flash of lights and intercom static shot the crowd around the sun with “Hot to the Touch.” From that point on, Grace fueled the audience with a blend of solo and Nocturnals tunes, each more dynamic than the last.

As the night moved on, the depth of the music expanded providing more than the anticipated sounds from previous and recent albums. What had the potential to be standard live renditions morphed into extended mishmashes of unexpected delight. “Loneliest Soul” turned into “Walking On Sunshine” which led into “Maneater,” then “Somebody To Love,” and ultimately returning back to “Loneliest Soul” after a gauntlet of chords and sequins.

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Play Something Good with John Foster

The Vinyl District’s Play Something Good is a weekly radio show broadcast from Washington, DC.

Featuring a mix of songs from today to the 00s/90s/80s/70s/60s and giving you liberal doses of indie, psych, dub, post punk, americana, shoegaze, and a few genres we haven’t even thought up clever names for just yet. The only rule is that the music has to be good. Pretty simple.

Hosted by John Foster, world-renowned designer and author (and occasional record label A+R man), don’t be surprised to hear quick excursions and interviews on album packaging, food, books, and general nonsense about the music industry, as he gets you from Jamie xx to Liquid Liquid and from Courtney Barnett to The Replacements. The only thing you can be sure of is that he will never ever play Mac DeMarco. Never. Ever.

Read More »

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