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Preview: Two Door Cinema Club at State

Following a show in Berlin, Germany, Irish indie-rock band Two Door Cinema Club will be performing at the Ithaca State Theater Thursday, as part of their world tour. Before they travel the country and head off to South Africa, Two Door Cinema Club will be playing in upstate New York for the first time in almost four years. Two Door Cinema Club formed in Bangor and Donaghadee, Northern Ireland, back in 2007. The three members came together to produce and experience a new sound. Ever since their first album, Tourist History, was released back in 2010, people from all over the globe have been bumping their heads and tapping their feet along to the hip and electronic rhythm of their songs.

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TEST SPIN: Kitty — Miami Garden Club

Miami Garden Club is the kind of album that makes you want to wake up at 2 p.m. and spend the rest of the day playing Animal Crossing and taking selfies in your Calvin Klein underwear. Kitty’s been laying the groundwork for such an album for a while. In her earlier tracks, the Daytona Beach-based rapper mixed goofiness and sadness with occasional glimpses of stark honesty. She’s at her most evocative dropping lines like, “You apologize to me when I see you do a line, but like/I’m open-minded and it’s fine/I don’t do that shit but I don’t really mind it.” But with tracks like “Give Me Scabies” and “Ay Shawty: THE SHREKONING, ” Kitty long fronted her tumblr tongue-in-cheek detachment over her vulnerability. I first fell in love with Kitty’s “Florida.” Over a shimmering beat by Hot Sugar, Kitty spins out emo hometown angst.

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TEST SPIN | LCD Soundsystem — American Dream

It has been nearly two years since the reformation of LCD Soundsystem, the Brooklyn-based dance-punk band led by James Murphy, critically- and commercially-rewarded for their searching, yet funny, lyrics and dense, mesmerizing beats. After announcing their return in the wake of a five-year hiatus begun by an aggressively-momentous farewell concert at Madison Square Garden, Murphy and his outfit quickly announced a series of high-profile festival appearances, including headlining Coachella, and also announced that a new album was in the works. A lot of time has now passed since the album was promised. At an LCD Soundsystem concert I went to in June in their Brooklyn backyard, I couldn’t help but sense an increasing collective impatience among fans — especially after LCD had made such a fuss in 2011 about their dissolution being permanent. As much as we may gladly re-experience the somber, yet danceable, melancholy of LCD’s greatest triumphs – Sound of Silver (2007) and This is Happening (2010) – a lot has happened in seven years.

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STRFKR: Psychedelic and Fresh

The Arts Quad was packed Saturday with students excited to hear the indie rock band STRFKR. The Portland-based band is known for its entrancing psychedelic and fresh sound. Psychic Twin, an Alternative duo, opened the outdoor show put on by Cornell Concert Commission. Over nearly 100 shows together, the Psychic Twin and STRFKR have developed a captivating show with each other. The openers provided a dreamlike pop sound with beautiful vocals that were the perfect opening for STRFKR’s exciting lineup of songs.

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TEST SPIN: Iron & Wine — Beast Epic

Music critics (often) fall into two traps. The first is comparison. Lacking a way to describe lyrics, songwriting, production and so on, critics get tempted to compare. We write about how a musician conforms to or subverts their genre. We provide a catalog of suggested listening, a list of similar musicians.

Taylor

The New Taylor

Music in 2017 is all about politics or Taylor Swift’s feuds with other celebrities. With “Look What You Made Me Do,” we were all graced with a single about the latter. In the song, Taylor Swift addresses the people who have bullied her, and the way she so inspirationally and unbelievably rises above it every single time, giving girls all around the country new and empowering Instagram captions. As much as I’d like to pretend that this single is just aimed at some nameless grade school bully, Swift makes it more than clear that this is about other celebrities. She makes sly jabs at Kanye West and his musical career, among other artists.

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TEST SPIN: Andy Mineo and Wordsplayed — Magic & Bird

I have to confess: I know little to nothing about basketball. For the longest time, I thought James Harden was the best defensive player in the NBA, and believed Michael Jackson and Michael Jordan were the same person till the former passed away. Yet despite my ignorance, when I heard that after a few years hiatus, rappers Andy Mineo and Wordsplayed would get off the bench and enter back into the rap game by releasing a joint basketball-themed project, I was intrigued. Basketball and hip-hop both thrive on competition and require collaboration, and while many rap songs have explored this connection, from J. Cole’s “I Got It” to Post Malone’s “White Iverson,” none have been able to do it quite like Mineo and Wordsplayed (John Itiola) have with Magic & Bird, a mixtape that is a pinnacle of basketball-hip-hop fusion. Incorporating ingenious wordplay over infectious trap beats, this fast-paced project is a tonal Valhalla.

Sun Sessions with SadoSan

Sun Sessions with SadoSan

SadoSan attempts to do something with his music that more than a handful of artists have aimed at, but which not all that many can claim to have actually accomplished: build something big and brilliant and smart and meaningful off of foundations that couldn’t be much humbler… awkward parties (“Should’ve Known Me”), dusty samples (Ikpeazu), cringeworthy interactions (this very video), and the like. What Sado gives us here in his Sun Session is just a sliver of that ethos: “‘Know Know’ is about dating in NYC,” he says, “and more specifically how it can be when you end up in an intense situation with someone whom you don’t know very well. Sometimes it can be hard to express to someone — especially right to their face — that you just want them to leave.” That’s it.

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TEST SPIN: Logic — Everybody

Concept albums are often a substantial sacrifice to commercial success. If an artist’s impulse to explore a certain idea outweighs their desire to make simpler songs with less context, that are a better fit for their brand, the album may not grab the popularity that a less complex album could have. For some people, the idea and passion that ties a project together may be enough to excuse a lesser quality of music. For others, having an exceptional concept isn’t enough to uphold an otherwise lackluster album. Logic’s Everybody, his third studio album and his seventh musical project released in the past seven years, should be enough to satisfy, if not please, both sides.

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Sun Sessions with West End China Shop

West End China Shop is a shabby rock outfit comprised of four self described “basement dads.” They play garage rock tunes with plenty of keyboard, for the kids and no one else. Drums: Jonny Collazo, Arts and Sciences, Comparative Literature, Class of 2018
Bass: Stephen Meisel, Arts and Sciences, Comparative Literature, Class of 2018
Keys: Franklin Ellis, CALS, Development Sociology/ IARD, Class of 2019
Vox/ Guitar: J. Benjamin Montaño, Arts and Sciences, Gov’t /Comparative Literature, Class of 2019

Set List
“Courtyard”

Instagram: @westendchinashop
Facebook: https://m.facebook.com/WestEndChinaShop/

Credits
Videographers: LeeAnn Marcello
Video Editor: LeeAnn Marcello
Audio Engineer: TJ Hurd
In collaboration with Electric Buffalo Records and Fanclub Collective