Downtown Boys Played to the Room

The context for Downtown Boys reasserts itself weekly if not daily. The band formed in 2014, two years before Donald Trump was elected president, but the Trump Administration gives the political punk band a reason to exist almost every time he or his Cabinet members open their mouths. Team Trump didn’t invent racism, sexism, transphobia, colonialism and toxic masculinity, but it uses these tools to assert the preeminent position of wealthy straight white men in the culture daily. 

Mipso Gets to the Point

Despite its mysterious name, Mipso is a remarkably plainspoken outfit. On its third album, Coming Down the Mountain, released in April, the band deals with heartbreak, homesickness, and wanderlust. The songs treat these well-trodden subjects with care, but they don’t mince words. They are clean and straightforward, rooted firmly in the folk tradition, but never overly folksy.

Mild High Club Doesn't Mess Around

[Update] “I’m not trying to soundtrack your fucking life,” says Alex Brettin, a.k.a. Mild High Club. “This is just my thing, and if you like it, hell yeah, I hope it’s inspiring, but if you don’t, fuck off.” This statement sums up Brettin’s marketing strategy pretty neatly. He takes his music seriously, and doesn’t have time for anyone who isn’t going to listen to it that way.

The Dodos Aren't Sure

“I was so stressed,” recalls The Dodos' vocalist and guitarist Meric Long. On a lark, he DJ’d at a museum event in the band’s native San Francisco, “and did the worst thing you can do as a DJ, which is have the music cut out.” But watching the guests meander, Long saw attendees were more focused on the planetarium’s spinning space bodies than his own rotating records, “which made it okay because then I was like, ‘Okay, they’re obviously not paying attention.’”

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