MUSIC REVIEW | Needtobreathe rock the Skyway Theatre

Photos by Patrick Dunn

It’s so good to see a hard-working rock band like Needtobreathe gaining momentum as they are out touring to support their fifth studio release Rivers in the Wasteland. In fact they did double duty on their June 12th return to Minneapolis playing a promotional set for Cities 97 prior to their full concert at the Skyway Theatre. The substantial line of ticketholders that would soon pack the venue was a diverse mix of young and middle-aged fans who were already aware of what this band is capable of bringing to the stage.

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MUSIC PHOTOS | Cher "Dressed to Kill" at the Target Center

Photos by Patrick Dunn

Fans spanning several generations packed the Target Center June 11th with high expectations for a truly diva-inspired performance. Veteran performer Cher made it happen with her big production Dressed to Kill Tour 2014. Many juicy words could be used to describe the energy of this show built around a song list covering nearly five decades of material, but “old” would certainly not be one of them. The set and costumes were visually stunning and hearing the music was good reminder of why Cher is admired and appreciated worldwide. Adding to the grand scale of the event, Cyndi Lauper opened the show with a full set of her well-known hits.

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TC Weekend | Green Line kickoff, Juneteenth, Northern Spark, Greenway Glow, Stone Arch Bridge Fest & more!

Festival-palooza is upon us, people! This weekend may be the biggest for outdoor festivals this summer. It’s certainly the biggest thus far, with a flurry of events, from the numerous Green Line kickoff celebrations, to Juneteenth, the Stone Arch Bridge Festival, Northern Spark and much more.  In honor of the Green Line launch, Metro Transit light rail and bus service will be free of charge both June 14 and 15, making it even easier to get around to all the happenings.

This weekend should prove particularly enjoyable for night owls, with night-time festivals that are bound to provide stunning visuals! It’s also Father’s Day weekend -- why not take Dad along to some of the events below? There's a 50% chance of showers both Saturday and Sunday so bring that poncho!

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MUSIC REVIEW | Backstreet Boys at the Xcel Energy Center: Backstreet's back, alright!

Photos By: 
Patrick Dunn

My first thought after grabbing my tickets from will call for the Backstreet Boys at St Paul’s Xcel Energy Center on Tuesday, June 10 was simply “What the hell am I doing here?” Looking out over the crowd, and for the first time in my life I could actually look OVER them as I was taller than most of the people there, I couldn’t help but notice that I stood out like a sore thumb: a scruffy 30-something amidst a sea of women who were predominantly dressed more for a night of hitting the clubs. The feeling of being on the outside was very strong as I watched a sea of people excitedly take selfies, making damn sure to get the stage in the shot.

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MUSIC REVIEW | Spanish Gold bring south Texas to Triple Rock Social Club

Photos by Chad Rieder

Drummer Patrick Hallahan (My Morning Jacket), guitarist Adrian Quesada (formerly of Grupo Fantasma) and guitarist and lead vocalist Dante Schwebel (City and Colour, formerly of Hacienda) make up the band Spanish Gold. Despite a meager showing crowd-wise, Spanish Gold hit Triple Rock Social Club in Minneapolis with an extremely solid set that included their entire recently released debut record, South of Nowhere, along with two covers. And they made it look easy.

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MUSIC REVIEW | Yann Tiersen enchants at the Cedar Cultural Center

Photo courtesy Yann Tiersen from another live performance

Summarizing a Yann Tiersen concert is rather like trying to use a few sentences to explain the beauty of Shakespeare's prose or what makes a Hemingway novel work. The summary inevitably fails because superlatives are inadequate to the task and there's simply too much variety for reductionism to work. Let me then begin with the basics: the audience at the Cedar Cultural Center listened raptly for the entirety of Sunday, June 8th's concert. A tremendous variety of music and novelty of sounds was compressed into the hour and a half of the main event.

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MUSIC PHOTOS | CHVRCHES at First Avenue

Photos by David McCrindle

CHVRCHES played at First Avenue on Thursday, June 5.

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MUSIC REVIEW | Erik Koskinen at the Icehouse

My 9-year old was just complaining because Real Phonic Radio is taking a break for the summer. Real Phonic is the monthly music show at the James J Hill Library. Aine and I are big fans. It was cold comfort to her that I was going to the Icehouse Wednesday night to see the Real Phonic house band Erik Koskinen. But at least I got my fix. 

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MUSIC REVIEW | A hair-free Gabriel Douglas from 4onthefloor unveiled at Bayside Grill

Saturday night at the Cabooze Gabriel Douglas fronted the 4onthefloor. They were loud and rocking and disheveled, to put it lightly. There were two new members on the lineup since I had last seen them play, leaving Douglas the only original member. The groove was different but the place was packed, partially because the show was moved indoors after the Cabooze patio was rained out. It was hot and sweaty with tons of people drinking, dancing and singing (or shouting) along. Douglas sported his signature big beard and sweaty curls.

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