Ben Folds at ATTPAC -- Can We Talk About Rock Orchestras?

Categories: Last Night

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Patrick Michels
Ben Folds with the Dallas Symphony in 2009

You've got a rock band. They're pretty good. They rock out. People seem to like them. What's the next logical step in the progression of this band or musician's sound? Get louder? Play faster? Dig the same groove onto the next album? Maybe even get quiet and introspective for a bit, but not enough to alienate the fanbase?

Nah, let's stick an entire orchestra behind them. That'll do it.

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Bruce Springsteen Put On a Killer Show Last Night

Categories: Last Night

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Mike Brooks
Bruce Springsteen and The E Street Band onstage at this weekend's March Madness Music Festival.

Despite cold and rainy weather, fans came out to Reunion Park for Sunday's big March Madness Music Festival finale. The Wind and The Wave, Pat Green, fun., and the man of the hour, Bruce Springsteen, put on a rain or shine show that couldn't be stopped or even hampered by the elements.

The usual admission capacity fear mongering that plagues any festival or high-profile live-music event in Dallas was running rampant from the early hours of Sunday morning. The Twittersphere was all a-flutter with reports of fans lining up outside the gates as early as 6 a.m., and promises that the entrance gates, which hadn't shut down due to capacity all weekend, would surely be overrun for Springsteen. Those fears however, were all for naught. Due to the rain and chill, the park never got more than half-full.


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Final Four: The Killers Were Hot, But the Weather Was Cold

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Mike Brooks

Maybe I hang out with extreme cynics or maybe my friends don't appreciate free, outdoor concerts like I do, or heck, I probably just don't have enough friends, but convincing someone to tag along with me to the Final Four series of concerts at Reunion Plaza proved tricky.

Everyone told me it would be a hot, sweaty mess, the weather would be too miserable, or you know, children.

All of that was so untrue.


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A Farewell to The Slip Inn

Categories: Last Night

For the past 15 years, Dallas locals' dirty little nightlife secret sat at Henderson and McMillan avenues. The Slip Inn may have been tiny, it may have been poorly lit, and the bathrooms might have been the most avoided on Henderson -- but there was a reason that there was a line to get in nearly every weekend. Slip Inn's hole-in-the-wall charm was more than apparent after just one trip to the small dancefloor. It was a place for Dallas to go end the night dancing close with a stranger, maybe get a little stoned on the back patio, and hear classic old-school hip-hop and R&B. No other club in Dallas has ever really showcased DJs of the genre the same way.

See Also: The Slip Inn To Close This Weekend

This past Saturday night, on the bar's last night open at 1806 McMilllan Ave., the line to get in was as long as I had ever seen it. Trailing down the parking lot against the club's brick wall, it almost reached the back patio fence by midnight. Girls in the back chain-smoked, teeming with the frustration of having to wait.

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Syd and the Internet Got Dallas into the Groove on Saturday Night

Categories: Last Night

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Mike Brooks
The Internet onstage at Trees this past Saturday
While you'd expect a young crowd for most Odd Future shows, Trees was filled on Saturday night with a diverse mix of fans of all ages. Then again, The Internet's Neptunes-influenced, neo-soul tinged, starry eyed R&B is not what you'd normally expect when you think from an off-shoot of a west coast hip hop crew.

One thing was for sure: most of the audience was women. This is customary for most live R&B, but in this case, it was highly attributed to the magnetism of The Internet's androgynous heartthrob front woman, Syd, formerly known as Syd The Kyd. Her sultry and cool charisma was undeniable.

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Cher at American Airlines Center, 03/26/14

Categories: Last Night

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Eva Raggio

As part of the most impressive parade of divas the Dallas area has seen in years (Diana Ross plays in April, Dolly Parton plays in May, Elton John played early March) Cher came to Dallas and proceeded to show them all how it should be done.

Upon entering American Airlines Center one was greeted by a Cher look-alike drag queen, who took it upon herself to act as host, gleefully taking pictures with those who asked. There were other drag queens attending of course, alongside little girls in makeup and men in leather, but most of the audience seemed to consist of 'Banger Sister' types whose wild years were behind them, accompanied by their middle-aged husbands.

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The Bradford 4: A Rare Gift for Dallas

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Jonathan Patrick

Something special happened in Dallas last night.

For a brief flash, our city was the center of free jazz--jazz's most uninhibited form. A quartet named The Bradford 4 performed at an intimate project space (Beefhaus) put on by local artist collective Art Beef. The Bradford 4 is fronted by legendary trumpeter/cornetist/composer Bobby Bradford, a man that can name Ornette Coleman, Don Cherry, Eric Dolphy and Charlie Haden as former co-workers. The other three members aren't exactly lightweights either - Frode Gjerstad (saxophone/clarinet), Ingebrigt Haker-Flaten (bass), and Frank Rosaly (drums) - having individually and collectively had a hand in some of the most exciting music in contemporary jazz.

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ScHoolboy Q Reminds Dallas Why He's Hip-Hop's Oxymoron

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Oxymoron (Deluxe) Album Cover- TDE Red Room

ScHoolboy Q is one of those rappers that you never truly know what to expect. With his recent major label debut, Oxymoron, Q treads the line between being dubbed a "conscious rapper" and a full-on trap gangsta rapper by way of drug references and a 2 Chainz feature. So, it makes perfect sense that the Dallas stop of his Oxymoron Tour, alongside supporting acts Isaiah Rashad & Vince Staples, would be true to its namesake, with a sold-out South Side Ballroom experience that was a hyperbola of low energy haze, hip-hop hippies, unapologetic spirituality, and high energy trap house.

"YAWK YAWK YAWK YAWK!" the crowd screams as a DJ blasts a mix of Kendrick Lamar's "M.A.A.D. City". The post-spring break concertgoers, decked out with floral bucket hats, and North Face fleeces, begin to get anxious as their voices cut through the haze of greenery to start a slow chant of, "QUINCY QUINCY QUINCY!"

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Punk Rock's Return to Deep Ellum is Not to Be Stifled

Categories: Last Night

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Mike Brooks
The Sentenced performs at RBC's grand reopening.

This past Friday, the glowing red canopy at 2617 Commerce St. was illuminated once again for the reopening of the storied Dallas punk club, RBC. Walking through the venue's tunneling entrance vaguely evoked walking through a time machine. It was as though the past seven years RBC has been closed zipped by in an instant, and everything seemed to pick up right where it left off -- fast, hard and loud as hell. The only differences were that this time the bathrooms are clean, the employees wear uniforms, and we're all a little bit older.

In the weeks leading up to this triumphant return, curiosity over the venue's renovation peaked. What would it look like in there? Would it be the same old Red Blood Club, the image fixed in our memories? Would the portrait of the late Jeff Stork (lead singer of mid-2000's local punk fixture Jump Boys) still hang over the stage in his memory? Would it smell better in there? In short -- no, no, and 1,000 times yes.


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The Six Best Performances at Spillover Music Festival

Categories: Last Night

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Mike Brooks

Every year, Dallas' most highly anticipated SXSW offshoot is Parade Of Flesh's Spillover Music Festival. This past Sunday, head talent buyer John Iskander and his crew really stepped their game up. Spillover 2014 moved from Sandbar Cantina to Elm Street, filling stages at Dada and Three Links with heavy-hitting headliners like Ty Segall, Dum Dum Girls, Astronautalis and more. Cold weather didn't hurt the turnout one bit, and Spillover's seventh year just might have been its best lineup yet, coming a long way from its original incarnation, Brofest. Steve Steward and Vanessa Quilantan were on hand to highlight their six favorite sets of the day.

See Also: The Fans of Spillover

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