Shows to Know: Anna Lunoe @ U Street Music Hall – 1/16

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Photo credit: artist’s website

If you’re looking for something crazy fun to do this week, then U Street Music Hall has a solution for you. Dance DJ Anna Lunoe is playing U Hall alongside Motez, T. Williams, and Destructo this Thursday night.

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ARTIST OF THE WEEK: Azealia Banks

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Photo credit: Rankin
Photo credit: Rankin

Azealia Banks. Where do I even begin? You might all know her as the rapper who released “212” waaaaaay back in the day (read: 2011). You might know her as the artist who dominated the blogosphere with the aforementioned song: brash, flagrant, but oh-so catchy. Everyone from Slate to the New York Times to the ever-omnipresent Pitchfork was talking about her. Then what happened? For the sake of keeping a very long story short (we’re all #blessed with Google these days. Feel free to further explore as you will.), I’m going to give you all the abbreviated version of her story, as I understand it. She was signed to a record label. She dropped the record label. There was loads of Twitter beef in there somewhere? Add a hearty sprinkling of announcements about the release of her debut album, which kept getting pushed back to the point of it being a joke that it would ever be released, a mixtape and a stellar EP, a few artist collaborations that never came to fruition, and here we are today. It is the Year of our Lord 2014 and Miss Banks has released Broke With Expensive Taste.

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Wet @ U Street Music Hall

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All photos: Lotanna Obodozie

These days, it seems that every new band is from Brooklyn; and whatever’s in the water over there seems to be working for Wet- the latest and greatest from the area. Kelly Zutrau, Martin Sulkow and Joe Valle began making music together when they were students in New York, and since then, the trio has released a self-titled EP. The band crafts the perfect blend of minimal electronic, R&B, and pop, drawing from all three genres to create their signature sound. Similarly, their impressive contrast of dreamy instrumentals against evocative lyricism captured the attention of the packed U Street Music Hall this past Saturday.

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ARTIST OF THE WEEK: Hannah Diamond

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Image Courtesy of Hannah Diamond

Believe me when I say that I’ve spent a very long time trying to figure out what genre Hannah Diamond (and her fellow PC Music cohorts) falls into. She’s pop, but not quite pop. Edgier? More saccharine? Definitely electronic, but almost exclusively so. Her music seems like it was made entirely using computers, no instruments. The list could go on and on, but the point of this is that Hannah Diamond is virtually impossible to lump into only one genre, if at all. In today’s world, everyone is scrambling to smack labels on whatever new music comes out, leading to (sometimes) ridiculous and obscure names in an attempt to explain whatever song / artist you’re listening to. If I were to come up with a genre, it would be something along the lines of sparklewave or ringtonecore. (I’ve even heard the phrase “glitter trap” thrown around.) Disgusting, right?

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Shows To Know: Snakehips & STWO @ U Street Music Hall 10/22

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Purveyors of all things involving awesome electronic music in the District, Closed Sessions is back at it and they’re bringing Snakehips and STWO (along with Royal and Hunt For The Breeze) to U Street Music Hall this Wednesday. Happy hump day!

SNAKEHIPS: For some reason, music made in the UK (and beyond) always slaps, and Snakehips is no exception to this rule. Their particular brand of electronic music is entrenched in soulful vocals, swishy synths, and deep bass. Is slow-house a thing because if so, Snakehips has it down pat. Their music manages to blend elements of house and soul, with a warmth that is not to be lost on the dance floor. Their remixes are amazing. Their original songs are amazing. This is a show you cannot miss.

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