Category Archives: Music

Alejandro Escovedo at the Birchmere

Alejandro Escovedo brings a lot of talented approaches into one rock figure. His show at the Birchmere in Alexandria Saturday had aspects of both his hard rocking postpunk career and also his quieter acoustic material. In both he was backed by a talented three piece, who wailed when the electricity was full and sat with [...]

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Review: Elvis Costello at Wolf Trap

At a time when heritage artists have been distinguishing their tours with reverent presentations of their classic albums, playing them in strict order, one side and then the other, Elvis Costello has found a more flexible vehicle in a tour to celebrate his 1982 ”Imperial Bedroom.” A landmark album in his rich period of complex pop, [...]

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Rock Review: U2 Does ‘The Joshua Tree’

Playing whole albums from past catalogs is the variation that has kept arenas full for classic rock acts. It’s a way to both break from the greatest hits format and the struggle to push a new product fans may not prefer while providing a one time celebration of the past. U2 may be one of [...]

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(Sandy) Alex G at the Rock & Roll Hotel

I wanted to see the show by (Sandy) Alex G in part because my daughter called him “the Elliott Smith of my generation.” This comparison took me aback, partly because I thought of, say, Nick Drake as the Elliott Smith of my generation. Which means I’m about two generations removed from what’s selling out the [...]

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Richard Lloyd at the Black Cat

When Tom Verlaine brought his latest version of Television on tour last year, fans savored hearing so much of “Marquee Moon,” their 1977 debut that has only grown in guitar stature over the years. Good as it was, there clearly was a missing link – the guitarist Richard Lloyd, whose intricate guitar interplay (and co-writing [...]

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How Gregg Allman Came to Sing

The death of Gregg Allman at 69 Saturday brings to four the number of original members of the Allman Brothers Band now gone. From the earliest recordings in 1970, his big brother Duane Allman (who died in 1971) might have been the star guitarist of the band, but it was Gregg who handled the craggy [...]

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Is That Jack Bauer on Guitar?

Among the perks of being a successful actor is the ability, at the drop of a hat, to fulfill every vague rock star notion you ever had. Unlike most struggling artists, there is no barrier to hiring a decent band, recording an album, or booking a tour that sells out based simply on your celebrity, [...]

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The Pixies Pummel On at Lincoln Theatre

Conventional wisdom says the road from the Stooges to Nirvana went through the Pixies. And though they never broke through to the degree of some of their emulators, the driving Massachusetts band returned from a long hiatus this century to see just how engrained their songs had become. In ads alone, their anthems got much [...]

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Deep Dive into American Roots Music

When radio threatened the young phonograph record industry in American cities in the 1920s, it sent out talent scouts to rural corners of the country, seeking to find local musicians who’d appeal to regional audiences where there still was no radio. They’d find local musicians by asking in town newspapers if they’d like to hear [...]

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Tommy Keene, Ivan Julian at Black Cat

A couple of D.C.-bred rockers returned to town Thursday for a show at the Black Cat’s  backstage, the culmination of a short duo tour in which they both traveled light — with only their own guitars. It helped that they brought with them careers’ worth of pedigree and songs that still worked quite well. Headliner [...]

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