Seeing the World From Ground Level: A Conversation With No-Comply

The summer of their junior year of high school, David Cabuenas ’19 and his friend Matt Valdez established the band No-Comply in their hometown Queens. The band represented a crossover of interests in fashion, music and art. Once at Cornell, the band grew to include Charles Chatman ’19 and has evolved significantly. Looking back on those years, Cabuenas sees them as “an incubation period.”

In conversation with David Cabuenas, I learned more about the No-Comply’s overall vision and how the sound has grown since coming to Ithaca. Cabuenas stated: “I learned a lot here in Ithaca, in terms of expanding my taste palate and taking what I learned in the music scene and the community here.

Show Me The Body, Sammus Slay at The Chanticleer

Note: The reviewer arrived too late to see the opening act, What Nerve. The Chanticleer’s top floor is the perfect setting for shows that bridge the divide between performer and audience. The room has no stage and is too small for there to be much distance between the two, making it feel more like a space of shared experience than a performance with separate performers and viewers. Both Sammus and Show Me the Body made excellent use of the room’s potential; both, although in remarkably different ways, managed to make the audience feel like part of the act. Sammus, a rapper and Ithaca native who is also a graduate student at Cornell, is without a doubt one of the most exciting acts that can be seen in Ithaca.

“A Space for the Freaks”: Pile/Palehound/Therm/Shore Acres Drive/Teencat at the Haunt

Ithaca Underground has long been lauded as one of the few music and art collectives in Ithaca that truly keep their ears to the ground and deliver the locals exactly what they want to hear. With that being said, last night’s concert was a dream come true for those who love to let the music visibly shake them up and down, those who feel not fear but exhilaration from the prospect of a mosh pit and those who like to keep their face down and, as Jimi Hendrix famously put it, “wave their freak flag high.”

Last night’s show was kicked off by Ithaca cat-pop group Teencat, whose energetic basslines and straightforward, if dark, riffs were topped off by the optimistic lyrics and strong lead vocal performance delivered by Kari Aldrich. They were followed by local favorite Shore Acres Drive, a three person-collective that blends emo, punk and post-hardcore and first debuted their music at the Ithaca Underground stage of the 2014 Ithaca Festival. Shore Acres Drive consists of Cornell students Charlie Fraioli on guitar and vocals, Jake Burchard on the drums and Ithaca College student James Manton on bass. Shore Acres Drive started as a solo acoustic project, with their music written exclusively by front man Charlie.

Get Lost: A Review of Naked Noise by an Art Virgin

My boyfriend knew never to discuss with me the possibility that “noise” music could take any talent to create; he knew I’d say there was no kind of artistic value in a bunch of sounds that I could easily reproduce. He knew that I equated noise to contemporary art that consists of a blank canvas or an empty room or a single red dot painted with a shaky hand. And he knew very well that I was absolutely determined to stay ignorant. So I understood his shock when I notified him that I would be going to Ithaca Underground’s Naked Noise #7 on Saturday night. What changed my mind was basement duty.

Speak For Themselves: An Interview with _____

Five underscores and no letters seems like a questionable name for a band; everything has to be called something, right? Not according to Brad Nathanson ’17 and Carsten Thue-Bludworth ’17, the two members of _____. Their band name doesn’t have any pronunciation; you’re not meant to say it. And while on the surface this might seem like a gimmick, they have the music to back it up. Their recorded output is limited so far to one promising EP, The Linden Sessions, which jolts and tumbles with a compositional vivacity and surety of form indicative of a band much deeper into its career than _____.

ITHACA A-LIVE | ChantiLoft

Olivia was unable to stay for the entire night so Ailis will be writing this solo. Ithaca Underground organized yet another fun night of music in the Chanticleer loft space on February 29, a Monday night, featuring Winston Bongo of Ithaca, Shore Acres Drive of Ithaca, Stove of Connecticut and Pottymouth of Northampton, Mass. First up for a very short set was Winston Bongo. Their spacey, electro-dance music was performed as a mostly improvisational jam session. The musicians worked well together, all crowding over a table filled with different instruments: synths, tambourines, maracas, beat generators, etc.

A Chat with Local Punkers, why+the+wires

By MIKE SOSNICK

The Sun spoke with David Nutt, why+the+wires’ vocalist and guitarist, about what it’s like to make and perform post-punk grooves in Ithaca. The Sun: How did why+the+wires come into existence? David Nutt: Kevin Dossinger (saxophone, accordion) and his wife Haley (violin) had been playing in the scruffy punky acoustic band Idatel in the mid-aughts. Shortly after Idatel fell apart, I moved to the area and the three of us decided to jury-rig something together in the summer of 2008.  We roped in Chris Romeis (drums) and eventually bassist Tito Butler.

“All Cool Girls Have Bangs”: Waxahatchee at the Haunt

I walked into the Haunt on a school night stressed, irritated and wishing I’d stayed in instead of spending a good hour securing a ride and a companion to go see, what I was pretty certain, would be a perfectly pleasant and perfectly missable indie rock show: Waxahatchee. Missable, I mean, in the relative sense, that this is Ithaca, where a line-up as stacked as Monday night’s is not all that remarkable. Ithaca spoils us with such an unrelenting stream of incredible music flooding the bars and basements that my calibration is warped — must-see’s become missable, missables become flimsy “attends” on Facebook, and it ends up being a somewhat monumental feat to get myself out to a group I’ve never heard of before. What I mean to say is, if Waxahatchee is here one month, Angel Olsen or Girlpool or Kurt Vile or Sharon Van Etten will be the next. The crowd, looking like a Portlandia episode, was predictable; I figured the music would be too.