BY VICTORIA MIDDLETON// Hatsune Miku is a 16-year-old Japanese music sensation who will be performing at The Anthem on July 12 on her much anticipated world tour, Miku Expo. With her signature blue pigtails, Hatsune Miku is clearly unlike other teen pop stars; she’s a hologram.
Miku is the world’s first computer generated performer. Not only is her anime-inspired appearance computer generated, but her voice is the result of a synthesizer, programmed to create her spellbindingly sweet voice.
BY MAGGIE HENSIEN // Beth Ditto’s debut as a solo artist marks a departure from the garage-influenced punk that characterized her involvement with the Olympia-based outfit, Gossip. The Arkansas native’s record Fake Sugar, released by Virgin Records in June of 2017, is the result of a strenuous recording process that spanned the two years since Gossip’s disintegration in 2016. The amount of songs created during this time clocked in at a whopping 80 before Ditto narrowed down to the album’s final 12, according to Beats 1.
With traces of country, gospel, soul, and Paul Simon’s Graceland, Ditto presents an album that encompasses loss, love, acceptance, and identity. The record bursts to life with “Fire,” the first track and lone single, to establish the energy and charisma that persists in the proceeding songs. Bits of wisdom (“Heaven wasn’t built in a day”), earnest confessions (“I get so tired of feeling sick and tired”), and anthemic assurances (“There are rules that I’m to break”) are sprinkled throughout songs “In And Out,” “Fake Sugar,” and “We Could Run.” The vocal strength for which Ditto is most known for is at its peak dynamism: fierce and mighty in “Go Baby Go” to radiant and poignant in “Lover.”
BY SAHRA MAXWELL// Rising indie-pop artist Gus Dapperton is playing at Songbyrd on Monday, March 5th!
Gus Dapperton is slowly taking the indie world by storm. He is from Warwick, New York and grew up listening to artists such as The Beatles, The Beach Boys, and Fifty Cent. He challenges the industry’s ideal views of male musicians. Dapperton proudly embraces his brightly colored fashion, painted nails, makeup and bowl cut. He is unapologetically himself. Dapperton shows that the music industry is a gateway for sexual fluidity and allows boy and girls to open themselves up to exploration.
At only 20 years old, Dapperton already has 2 EP’s that have created buzz throughout the music industry. The self produced singer first got involved in the industry in 2016 when he came out with the single “Moodna, Once with Grace.” He dropped his first EP last August and his hit single, “I’m Just Snacking” has more than 4 million plays.
BY BRIAN SEUCH// The Oh Hellos first stumbled into my Spotify stream a few years ago while I was manically discovering folk rock for the first time. It was a brand new genre to me, with the charm of country and the structure of my favorite indie songwriters. “Hello My Old Heart” instantly topped my new playlist and fed the flames of my interests. Since I discovered them a few years ago, The Oh Hellos have released two full albums where they work to pin down their own creative style and energy while maintaining the happy go lucky atmosphere that their oldest work brought out. As they cite Fleet Foxes and The Middle East as their influences, it is no wonder they’ve cultivated such a strong following in the folk community.
The Oh Hellos boast slow campfire songs such as “Cold is the Night” which only features the two singers, a guitar, and the occasional whistle. Songs like this are delightfully simple and offer the listener an escape from the bustle of daily life as music forces them to slow down along with the lyrics. On the other hand, songs like “Lay Me Down” are more reminiscent of Trampled by Turtles fast paced strumming which cant help but leave the listener stomping their feet to the rhythm. Regardless of the style their songs are anything but formulaic and it is clear the writers are intentionally imaginative while planning their duets. Because the songs are so different both within and between titles The Oh Hello’s listeners just keep demanding more.
BY SARAH SOPHER\\ Lights is my all time favorite artist. Her genuine nature and innovative art forms are refreshing and uplifting. Lights is more than just a musician. She is an innovator, a painter, and the author of her very own comic book series. This season Lights is headlining her own tour, “We Were Here”, to bring her new project to life. The “We Were Here” tour will be at 930 Club in Washington, DC this Tuesday 2/27.