Performing as Cadence Weapon, Rollie Pemberton is known for his way with words — even spending two years as Poet Laureate for the City of Edmonton. Pemberton’s last two albums, Breaking Kayfabe and Afterparty Babies, were nominated for Canada’s Polaris Music Prize while his latest release, Hope In Dirt City, is an attempt to capture the artist’s newest musical phase while also paying homage to earlier forms of hip hop. The album combines several genres of music fluidly for what Pemberton considers his most mature album yet.
Along with the rising Afrobeat scene in NYC, the twelve piece ensemble Zongo Junction has gained notoriety in the city. Afrobeat, which could be described as a politically motivated combination of funk, jazz and Nigerian Yoruba music, is known for complex rhythms and high energy tunes. After extensive tour on the east and west coasts, Zongo Junction has built a reputation on their ability to get a crowd moving. The band stopped by our studio while preparing for their next tour.
FIDLAR (an acronym for “Fuck It Dog Life’s A Risk) is a group of Los Angeles party rockers with a devil may care attitude; their songs advocate a hedonistic lifestyle of indulgence in the important things — partying, sex and skating. Finishing up a recent tour with The Hives, FIDLAR was likened to the Replacements and Dead Kennedys by LA Weekly. The guys dropped by our studio to share some of their music and tales from the road.
Sydney Wayser is a NYC singer-songwriter with roots in both Los Angeles in Paris. She recently visited our studios to play songs from her latest album, Bell Choir Coast, and to discuss the project with Maia Macdonald.
Former air traffic controller, Dave Munro got his musical start creating demos while serving away from home in the US Navy. Returning from deployment to find a hometown fan base who’d taken a liking to his work, Munro formed a band. Air Traffic Controller’s music combines life experience with a unique sound which has been gaining big name attention since 2009, resulting in — among other things — a nomination for MTV’s “Best Break-Out Artist” and a win for “Best Indie Rock Act” of the 2010 Boston Music Conference.
Black Box Revelation is a garage rock duo from Brussels that’s been playing together for more than ten years. When they recently visited us for a session of BTR Live Studio, they spoke with us about recording their latest album in LA and being able to travel worldwide, as well as how they came to play garage rock — a genre not native to their Belgian homeland.
On May 15th, Vancouver dark-dance band Mode Moderne celebrated the North American release of their new EP, Strange Bruises, on Little Organ Records. Centered around the music of Clint Lofkrantz, Felix Fung, and Philip Intile, Mode Moderne combines synths with chorusy, reverby guitars that instantly bring to mind some favorite moody pop songs from the 1980s. The band made their New York debut in early June, including a stop at our studios to record this exclusive live session.
Team Genius joins visits the studio for a session of BTR Live Studio and discusses and chats with Maia about their music.