The Joys of Communal Music Making

In moments like these, I’m reminded of how thankful I am that music remains such an important part of my life. So why, then, is the joy I feel when performing only so strong when I’m playing in an ensemble? Why can I not extract these same emotions when playing by myself?

DJ Diesel: Getting Hype With One of the NBA’s Biggest Stars

DJ Diesel’s set was a worthwhile experience, improving in quality with each song and mixing enough genres for a wide range of tastes to enjoy. There’s only so much hype that can be generated over Zoom as opposed to in-person, especially with a laggy connection, but Shaq did an admirable job at rising to the challenge with his visuals, body language and facial expressions all on point.

PONTIN | The Burning Soul of Psychedelia

It can be tempting to trace the roots of psychedelic culture back to the plant-eating, headband-wearing hippies of the 1960s, but doing so neglects an extensive and riveting past. Historical accounts tell of smoking hemp seed in Ancient Greece, consuming mushrooms in the Aztec Empire and the Viking cultures of Scandinavia and chewing peyote in Native American societies across the United States.

GUEST ROOM | How Machine Gun Kelly Gave Away His Hope to Others

Machine Gun Kelly’s newest project, Tickets To My Downfall, has had considerable success since dropping in September. The pop-punk inspired album debuted atop the Billboard Charts after selling 126,000 units in its first week. The collection of songs remains relevant and has championed a revival of the ubiquitous rock sound of the early 2000s. 

Ironically, while clearly a sonic experiment, the project centers around the same conceptual premise Kelly has long asspoused : Life is hard and Kelly’s fame and fortune have only exacerbated his emotional troubles. This is hardly a novel concept in music, yet the particular combination of sound, lyrics and vocals set this album apart and promulgate a unique message we can all learn from. Tickets to My Downfall explores emotional angst, but to a celebratory and passionate tune.