Hopscotch 2014 Day Party Lists

Papa M (David Pajo), Hopscotch 2012

Papa M (David Pajo), Hopscotch 2012

Hopscotch Music Festival officially kicks off on Thursday evening. If you’re planning to be in Raleigh, don’t bypass the excellent lineup of FREE day parties from Thursday afternoon through Sunday! If you don’t have a wristband, you can still see a hearty selection of acts that range from local to national. It’s also not too late to buy a wristband to the official festival! A small amount remain available for purchase through Hopscotch’s website.

Having trouble wrapping your mind around day party schedules and time slots? I’ve compiled them into a list for Thursday through Sunday*, and you can download it right here**: Hopscotch 2014 Day Parties

A couple of highlights:

On Friday, Valient Himself (of Valient Thorr) fronts Brief Lives from Richmond, VA 2:00PM at CAM. Saw them play Neptunes a few months back and they will rock your face off.

Also on Friday, legendary Thurston Moore (Sonic Youth) will play Kings Barcade with harpist, Mary Lattimore at 4:20PM. If you’re not outwardly familiar with Lattimore, she played on Moore’s 2011 solo album, Demolished Thoughts, and was part of the band during that tour. There’s an interview somewhere out there where Moore states that Lattimore is the first person he’s ever had to “fire” (begrudgingly) from a band. Transportation costs are high for harps.

On Saturday, Landlady plays Pour House at 3:30PM. Frontman, Adam Schatz has a repertoire that includes playing saxophone for Man Man as well as Vampire Weekend. Catch them at this show because it will be easier to see and the acoustics will be better than when they play during the actual festival at Tir Na Nog (no hard feelings).

Girls Rock NC will be hosting a ‘Babes in Boyland’ party on Saturday in the Warehouse District where Ex Hex will slay. If you missed them at July’s Merge 25 Fest, here’s your chance to catch them. The party runs from 12PM – 5PM, and although I couldn’t find a set lineup with time slots, I’d venture to guess they’ll headline and go on close to 4PM.

Special love to The (now defunct) Spazzatorium Galleria, as Jeff Blinder (Spazz Presents) brings another great mix to Slim’s during this year’s SpazzScotch III day party on Saturday from 12PM – 6PM. You can catch many of the bands that have played Greenville’s annual Spazz Fest. There’s one secret act on the lineup that you will have to show up to see.



*The times listed are based on a mix of times provided on Hopscotch’s website, along with the official Facebook event pages for each day party. Check those for any last minute changes.

**Schoolkids Records and Humble Pie were cut from my Saturday list in order to fit everything on one page (I’m really sorry). You can view those on the official Hopscotch Day Party list here.
UPDATE 9/3/14: Schoolkids Records has added a list their day parties to their website.

Moogfest / Asheville, NC / 2014

The Crystal Ark, in sequins and glory

The Crystal Ark, in sequins and glory

Beyond the music, Moogfest is a meeting of the minds. It’s a showcase of digital music at this point in time, and a venue for discussion on where and how music can evolve. During this year’s Moogfest, I attended a panel on the Future of Instruments presented by Cyril Lance of Moog Music, Jesper Kouthoofd of Teenage Engineering, and Peter Kirn of Create Digital Music. Talking points spanned all angles; from analog to digital, from Maker/DIY to commercial. But where all of these points converged was the role music plays in our lives. One quote from this panel summed up the whole festival perfectly:

“Creating music and art are ways of celebrating the beautiful parts of being human.” – Cyril Lance (Chief Engineer of Moog Music)

Here’s a small sampling from what I saw during Moogfest 2014 (I’m being sort of biased. Escort was just mind-blowing. I might have to do a full piece on them soon)…

Crowd favorites, Escort

Crowd favorite, Escort played two encores, ran out of songs and then covered “Tainted Love”

Le1f at New Earth during Moogfest

Le1f sporting Janet Jackson at New Earth

Escort hypnotizes a packed crowd during Moogfest

Escort hypnotizes a packed crowd

Avey Tare's Slasher Flicks... things out of my childhood dreams

Avey Tare’s Slasher Flicks… things out of my childhood dreams

Escort performing at a shoulder-to-shoulder show inside Asheville Music Hall

Escort performing at a shoulder-to-shoulder show inside Asheville Music Hall

The Emotron / Greenville, NC / Spazz Fest V – 2014

The Emotron at Spazz Fest V

The Emotron at Spazz Fest V

One undeniably great aspect of show-going is watching bands and artists grow and morph over the years. That being said, when Jeff Blinder booked  The Emotron for Spazz Fest V’s huge Saturday late-night party, I was feeling a little bit on the fence. The Emotron’s past Greenville performances have become those of show lore and legend; his GG Allin-esque antics included nudity, bodily fluids, you name it. But sometimes (a lot of times?) you just want to go to a show and not have to worry about someone peeing on you. So, I felt more than a bit relieved when Jeff released the following info in the days leading up to Spazz Fest:

THE EMOTRON. REUNION SET. No words — just come get experienced. There will be no bodily fluids exchanged by him during this performance. It’ll involve tree branches. That’s all he’ll say.

By the time I was able to make it down to the party, it was getting close to 3am. Jumping out of the car, synth beats were echoing down the street, so I hustled my way up Dickinson and was met at the door by a wave of Nag Champa. Up on stage, The Emotron was in his signature cowboy shirt, a curly wig and a silver glitter cape. More subdued and focused, this version of The Emotron was more enjoyable than previous versions. His stage presence and performance were practiced, and had much more of an impact than the old Emotron’s spastic shock value sets. His last song, dedicated to a friend battling heroin addiction, was the most poignant of the evening. At intervals during the song, The Emotron grabbed handfuls of flour, put them in his wig and shook his head while screaming a chorus about depression. By the end of the song, he had made the transformation to an old man with white hair.

Although I didn’t get that song on video, I did record The Emotron talking about his 10-year anniversary of playing shows as The Emotron before going into a new version of his song, “The Guy”…