Music

​Experiments in hip-hop

by Diane Miller | .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address) | April 24th, 2014

Kill the Vultures to twist beats at The Aquarium

Alexei Moon Casselle is a born and bred Minneapolis rapper. He’s been a hype man for Twin-Cities legends Atmosphere and Eyedea & Abilities, an acoustic guitarist for the indie group Roma Di Luna and an emcee for the hip-hop party group Odd Jobs. Nowadays he spends time “killing vultures,” so to speak, with experimental beats, rhymes and poetry.

This Saturday, April 26, Casselle’s hip-hop group Kill the Vultures will perform its very…

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​“Love, Loss, & Regret”—Pat Lenertz Band comes into its own

by Diane Miller | .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address) | April 3rd, 2014

Photo by Holly D. Photography // Cover by Raul Gomez

Having singer/guitarist Pat Lenertz in town is like having our very own John Prine, Jerry Garcia, Waylon Jennings or Willie Nelson. These comparisons are huge, but the humble Lenertz has a really strong knack for paying respects to his heroes.

In fact, he has so many heroes that he brought in 24 of his favorite local musicians to play on his very first solo record, “Love, Loss, & Regret,” set to release April 17 with a party at The Aquarium.

“It’s a reflection of the downtown…

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HPR at SXSW

by Chris Hennen | .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address) | March 20th, 2014

Destruction Unit / photo by Chris Hennen

For six years in a row, I’ve travelled to Austin, Texas for the SXSW Music Conference and Festival, which has become the biggest, most talked about spectacle in the music industry. The conference is most well known for its music portion, but this year I had the opportunity to cover the music and interactive sides of it as well.

What started as a music conference in 1987 to break new bands has grown into something much, much larger. Established musical acts that don't need any exposure,…

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​HBO finds Amanda Standalone

by Diane Miller | .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address) | March 13th, 2014

Amanda Standalone / Photo by Amber Fletschock

Apparently not all serious musicians have to be really good at “putting themselves out there.” Local folk singer Amanda Nygard (Standalone) admits she’s terrible at it and yet here she is, receiving paychecks from rich and revered women like Maria Shriver and signing contracts from people she’s never met from cities she never visits.

Indeed, this March 17 (St. Patty’s Day), Nygard’s music will debut on HBO in its brand new documentary: “Paycheck to Paycheck: The Life &…

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​KumNcyde: Bringin’ sexy back

by Diane Miller | .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address) | February 6th, 2014

Chazz, K(r)ISS, Deriq, AJ and CJ are back. Boy, if you thought Halloween was crazy, get ready for V-Day and expect all things to be badder, ballsier, bigger, better and bunchier.

That’s right, the Fargo boys of KumNcyde are redefining love as we speak. Y’all better be ready at The Aquarium.

High Plains Reader: Last Halloween, with your sweaty dance moves, mucho-suave matching outfits and pristine voices, you boys stole all our hearts at The Aquarium. What do you guys have in store for…

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​Backdoor bully blues

by Diane Miller | .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address) | February 6th, 2014

Nearly 16 years ago, 2014 Fargo Winter Blues Fest headliner Shannon Curfman appeared on the cover of the High Plains Reader for the first time.

“It pretty much made my life hell, to be honest,” said Curfman to HPR mid interview, when asked about the experience.

Of course, that’s not what was intended nor what she expected.

“It was like the coolest thing ever, I thought, to be on the cover of the High Plains Reader because that’s what I would read every week,” Curfman said, who…

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Bone Thugs still in harmony

by Diane Miller | .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address) | January 30th, 2014

The two-decades-old hip-hop group Bone Thugs-N-Harmony is hugely responsible for popularizing melodic, tongue-twisting rap. The five-member crew’s pitch-perfect singing, ultra-fast, ultra-precise word play and authentic urban lyricism will indeed have Bone Thugs forever remembered as one of the greatest hip-hop groups of all time.

This Feb. 7, Bone Thugs will perform at The Venue with A$AP Ferg, famous for his song “Shabba” featuring A$AP Rocky. Fargo rappers Charlie Mizza, Triz…

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​Grunge brothers

by Diane Miller | .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address) | January 23rd, 2014

The Edith Massey plays tag team

Sharing is caring according to the Fargo rock band The Edith Massey. Guitarist/drummer/singer Dane Marcusen and Guitarist/drummer/singer Matthew Buettner share guitar, drum and singing duties.

With a mix of longtime-friendship trust and a shared desire to “explore the stage,” Buettner and Marcusen, western North Dakota natives, make a great pair.

Both musicians are expressive, grungy rock-n-roll songwriters and with coordinated enough feet to play drum…

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Advancements in heavy metal

by Diane Miller | .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address) | January 23rd, 2014

Local guitarist raising money for progressive metal project

Jake Gillette is set to record what may be one of the greatest projects of his music career: an original progressive metal album made up of years’ worth of melodic ideas yet to be truly documented. The project is called “AfterThought.”

Gillette, a local veteran guitarist (also one of HPR’s “Guitar Heroes”), and his longtime band mate/keyboard player Zach Frisk, say now that technology has advanced, their dream of…

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​Carluster Crumplebee Orhchestra: Fargo’s “hot club” performs in the style of Django Reinhardt

by HPR Contributor | .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address) | December 19th, 2013

Photo by J Earl Miller

By Richard Schaan

What do you get when you combine the style of a two-fingered jazz guitar legend, the name of a backup tight end that played one season with the Minnesota Vikings, and a collection of some of the area’s most talented musicians?

The answer is The Carluster Crumplebee Orchestra, a gypsy jazz band inspired by the music of Django Reinhardt, a Frenchman who became one of the world’s greatest jazz guitar players despite losing the use of two fingers in a fire. As for the…

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​The other shoe

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