Category Archives: Review

U2 Tells Its Story at CapitolOne Arena

It was only last year when U2 hit the stadium circuit for a kind of nostalgia immersion with the 30th anniversary of “The Joshua Tree.” The give and take for the band’s 2018 tour boasts smaller venues — if hockey arenas can be considered small — and a largely lesser known album to promote, last [...]

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Jimmie Dale Gilmore Joins Dave Alvin

Dave Alvin and Jimmie Dale Gilmore had known each other for years on the Americana circuit, but it wasn’t until they joined forces for a brief acoustic tour last year did they find that they also cut their musical teeth watching blues greats at the old Ash Grove club in Los Angeles. They decided to [...]

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Belle and Sebastian at The Anthem

Belle and Sebastian’s current tour is a movable feast, where substantially different set lists are conjured each night, whole sections of musicians are added and subtracted, and the fun being had on stage is certainly contagious to those in the crowd. The setup at the Anthem Saturday for the group was an odd one: general [...]

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Amadou & Miriam at the Birchmere

One might think that the whole of the Washington D.C./Maryland/Virginia metro area were clad in red and glued to what would be the winning game in the Stanley Cup Finals last Thursday. But in Alexandria, a couple wore lime green tunics on stage and conjured up hypnotic, danceable music from their Mali homeland. Amadou & [...]

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Ry Cooder at The Birchmere

The venerable guitarist Ry Cooder took a seat to kick off his ”Prodigal Son” tour Monday not because he was weary at 71. No, he said. Sitting in the direct line of amps arranged in a semi-circle behind him, with a rack of nearly 10 instruments to his side, he found that it all sounded better to [...]

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Japanese Breakfast Headlines at Last

Based in Philly, Japanese Breakfast has played more than a few gigs 140 miles to the south in D.C., opening for a handful of bands before finally getting a headlining gig at the Black Cat last year. Headlining at the fabled 930 Club, though, was something Michelle Zauner almost refused to dream for herself. That [...]

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Pussy Riot at Washington D.C.’s Black Cat

Pussy Riot always seemed the last of the fearless punk bands, a group that would thrash for what it believed in and be willing to be jailed for it,  as they famously were in Russia’s capital in 2016 after a church performance. By the time they made it to the U.S. capital Wednesday as part [...]

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Okkervil River Rolls Again

On the inaugural night of the new Okkervil River tour Sunday at D.C.’s Black Cat, frontman Will Sheff kept saying what a joy it was there to be there and perform. He brought up that word joy more than once, possibly because he has been accused of being a Gloomy Gus in recent years, sending [...]

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Review: Liam Gallagher in One Hour Flat

Seems like all of England was at the Royal Wedding Saturday, but rocking native son Liam Gallagher, so highly esteemed in his home country, was in Washington, D.C., to make up a show he canceled last year. And looking as if he wanted to leave as soon as possible. Other than fulfilling an implied contract [...]

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David Byrne Innovates at The Anthem

David Byrne has always been as interested in visual art as in music. So his tours with the Taking Heads became increasingly more creative performance pieces with the herky, jerky music, big suits and band movements to accompany his spiky, polyrthmic sounds. His solo tours were often just as arresting, and for the current “American [...]

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