“Ventura” review: Anderson .Paak is back in tip-top shape on fourth album

In case you didn’t know it by now, Anderson .Paak is a star in the music game. He’s already released a modern classic (as some would call it) in his second album Malibu. But where did he come from in the first place?

 The weird thing about him is how he seemingly came out of nowhere, but was here all along. .Paak has been around since 2009, working with the likes of Dr. Dre, ScHoolboy Q, Flying Lotus, The Game, and Kendrick Lamar since then. Many have grown to love his unique voice and his ear for instrumentation. But fans and music critics alike have begun to wonder if .Paak can replicate the quality of his album Malibu due to the mixed reviews of its follow-up Oxnard in 2018.

   On Ventura it seems like .Paak is ready to prove himself yet again. Let’s dive right in and see if he can do that on his fourth studio album.

First impressions

  • The Good: On my first listen through the album, I was amazed at the sonic direction that .Paak went with this time around. It is so different from his last album Oxnard and that isn’t a bad thing at all. The project gives off more of a late 70s-early 80s vibe with disco/funk influences and it’s a really nice change of pace from his previous work.
  • The Bad: The only bad thing I can see thus far with this album is that it is simply too short. It doesn’t drag at all due to the fact it’s only 11 songs long, and I would have much rather preferred a few more songs just to see how far Anderson could take this sound.  

Lyrics/Flow

  • The Good: On this project we hear .Paak utilizing his beautiful singing voice in a variety of different ways. We also get the opportunity to hear him rap a little bit, but the rapping doesn’t overpower the singing like on some of the songs on Oxnard. It is a really good mix and there is something for everyone in this collection of songs.   
  • The Bad: While the singing/rapping is very good on the project, the subject matter is a bit lacking. Most of the tracks have similar concepts that we’ve already heard .Paak discuss in detail in the past. That isn’t terrible, but I would have loved to hear some new ideas fleshed out in these tracks.  
  • Score: 7.7/10

Beats

  • The Good: As I mentioned before, it seems that Anderson .Paak went with a more 70s-80s classic R&B/funk feel. Once you listen through the whole project, you’ll definitely feel that. The beats on this project just resonate a different energy that makes the listener actually feel something. They convey the emotion that .Paak is trying to get across in each track and I applaud him for that.  
  • The Bad: Even though most of the project is new sonic territory for .Paak, not every track seems to have got that message. This knock is only for a few tracks and I don’t think it detracts from the album as a whole. It is a great project and I’d still recommend it if you enjoy .Paak’s style of music.  
  • Score: 8.5/10

Replayability

  • The Good: If you’re looking for a short but sweet album that sounds fresh every time through, you’ve got it right here from Anderson .Paak. This album is only 11 songs and it clocks in at 39 minutes. It doesn’t drag in the slightest and that is a huge boost for the replayability.  
  • The Bad: The only bad thing I can say in terms of the album’s replayability is that if you aren’t a fan of Anderson’s style of music, you may get bored after your first few listens. That is understandable but doesn’t detract from the project as a whole.  
  • Score: 8.2/10

Standouts

Final thoughts

After the less-than-stellar album that 2018’s Oxnard was, I’m happy to see Anderson .Paak get back on the right path with his music. I would 100 percent recommend this album for anyone that wants to hear some pure good vibes this spring. This project is perfect for the warm weather we’ve got headed our way and it will for sure stay in constant rotation.  

Man, this project is honestly so great and I can’t get enough of it. I’ve had pretty much the whole album on repeat since it came out. There is enough variety on here to keep me coming back and it doesn’t get stale as fast as other albums. I love the heavy funk influences that Cheeky Andy used simply because they sound so crisp and polished. I’d love to hear more of that from him in the future.

Honestly this project isn’t groundbreaking in too many ways, but that doesn’t mean it isn’t great in its own right. .Paak tried something new on Oxnard and I respect him for that, but I respect him even more for knowing exactly what he’s good at and giving that to us on Ventura. This is one of the best albums of 2019 thus far and will remain that regardless of what other big artists drop for the rest of the year.  

Final Score: 8.4/10    

K-UTE Radio/University of Utah does not own any images in this piece.

The Conference of Champions?

The University of Utah collectively celebrated when the school entered the Pacific-12 Conference in 2011, as the most recent addition alongside the University of Colorado. Home to prestigious and storied institutions like Stanford and the University of Southern California, many saw the move as a big step onto the national stage for the U. Undeniably, joining the PAC-12 has caused a ripple of positive impact across the U, where PAC-12 logos are proudly littered throughout the campus. This status has had the most visible impact on athletics, but it also further establishes the U’s credibility as a high-level research and academic destination. But eight years after joining the conference, is the PAC-12 all that it was made out to be? In sports terms, any progress the PAC-12 seems to have made is quickly evaporating.

The University of Utah Celebrates Joining the Pac-12 in 2011

A Lack of Success

Fresh off of what has been a captivating March Madness tournament, the PAC-12 delivered yet another uninspired performance. After an underwhelming series of conference play, the PAC-12 unexpectedly managed to land three teams in the tournament: Oregon, Washington, and Arizona State. While Arizona State bowed out in the first round, and Washington managed to scramble past Utah State before being quickly dispatched in the second round by North Carolina, Oregon proved to be somewhat more resilient. The Ducks fought their way into a sweet sixteen berth, holding their own against a vaunted Virginia team before falling during the final minutes. As pitiful as this year was, last year proved even more deflating, as the lone PAC-12 team who made the tournament, Arizona, was decimated by the 13-seeded Buffalo Bulls during the opening round of play. 

Given the historic dominance of teams like UCLA and more recently Arizona during March basketball, it is shocking to reflect on how bad the PAC-12’s record has been of late. The conference has only produced one final four team since 2008, and has not won a national championship since 1997. And basketball is not the only sport PAC-12 fans have been bemoaning. Football has been also mired in inconsistency. The conference managed to win four of seven bowl contests this past season, lining up with many of the other power conferences. But go back to the 2017-18 season, and the problem becomes evident. PAC-12 teams lost eight of nine games, with Utah being the lone victor. In 2016-17 the PAC-12 lagged behind all major conferences with just six bowl invites, and went an even .500 in those games. 

In the five years of the College Football Playoff, the PAC-12 has had only two teams participate, and neither won the championship. Rewind past the new playoff system and the results do not get any better. The conference has not produced a champion since the 2004 USC team coached by Pete Carroll (though the Utes did have an undefeated 2008 season prior to joining the PAC-12). 

Washington Quarterback Jake Browning is Tackled During the 2019 Rose Bowl Game

Money Woes

Consistent failings by the PAC-12 to generate competitive teams on the national stage has undoubtedly been a cause for concern amongst school’s athletic directors. Optimists may point out how many of these shortcomings only tell a part of the story, and could argue the PAC-12 still produces top-notch sports. Others may also point out this criticism is only leveled against two sports, football and basketball, despite the PAC-12 representing over 13 different NCAA sanctioned sports. But both of these arguments ignore perhaps what is the most crucial part of all of college athletics. Money. Football and basketball constitute a majority of the money circulating around most college sports, and the health of these programs is often used as a yardstick for the success of the athletics of the school as a whole. The PAC-12 has begun to woefully lag behind in the revenue department. 

As this helpful New York Times piece illustrates, it is easy to be deceived by the PAC-12’s current revenue situation without the proper context. Since 2009 when Larry Scott took up the position of commissioner, conference revenue has grown by $400 million, and member schools have seen their share drastically increase. Yet, when compared to other power conferences, these numbers lag behind. Currently, the PAC-12 beats only the A.C.C. when comparing revenue distribution by school.

A large part of these financial failings is due to mismanagement by conference leadership. Unlike many other major conferences, the PAC-12 ‘s broadcasting network is independently owned. Other power 5 conferences have paired their networks to major media companies like Fox or ABC. While this can pose complications for control over the network, it also can generate millions in broadcasting rights. And major media corporations are clamoring to obtain these rights, as live sports is a continually developing market amidst a shrinking television base. Sal Siino, a sports media executive and Harvard Business School Graduate, cites increasing consumer demand for live sports as a reason for more competitive streaming rights bidding by media outlets. Siino estimates nearly 30% of people have cable subscriptions because of sports alone. This is why corporations like Fox or ABC have begun to put forward more lucrative contracts for streaming rights.

Bucking the data trends, the PAC-12 Network chose to blaze their own trail, and ultimately saw none of this large-scale contract money come in to the conference. Additionally, they must bear the weight of supporting a cable network itself. Sure, this has meant the PAC-12 has maintained complete ownership of their product, but other conferences are reaping the rewards of signing big contracts. The Big Ten recently announced a $2.64 billion deal with Fox and ESPN for their streaming rights, nearly double the size of a similar deal the PAC-12 made in 2011. And despite the optimistic musings of conference leadership about the PAC-12 Network, the outlook seems bleak. As someone who has been involved with and seen PAC-12 Network broadcasts of sports, I can tell you firsthand they are not on par with bigger media outlets. Crew members are not as efficient, experienced and effective. The on-screen presentation is not as fluid. The commentary and analysis provided is second-rate. It is hard to see the this product flourishing.

Who’s Responsible?

The overall state of the conference has become so dire that several former PAC-12 athletic directors, including Utah’s Chris Hill, have publicly criticized its operations.

So why have all these mistakes been made? Conveniently, one individual’s name consistently crops up when discussing the situation: PAC-12 Commissioner Larry Scott. Scott is the former head of the Women’s Tennis Association, and captivated PAC-12 university chancellors and presidents with his vision for where to take the conference. Since his tenure began in 2009, the conference has experienced ups and downs. But given the past several years of mediocrity, Scott’s leadership seems increasingly untenable. 

To start, Scott has reported a salary of $4.8 million, making him the highest paid commissioner in college sports. Such a high compensation should warrant equally high output, but that has not been the case. Another big issue has been referring, which the PAC-12 has seen many high-level gaffes in lately. Scott has confirmed that frequently the PAC-12’s general counsel and other executives have overturned in-game reviews made by referees, asking them to change their conclusion (which they simply state is offering another opinion).

Pac-12 Commissioner Larry Scott

There is no doubt that Larry Scott has a litany of issues on his hands. Granted, the conference is far from a failing institution. As I mentioned, under Larry Scott’s tenure, the conference’s revenue has grown from $100 million a year to nearly $500 million. But again, other conferences seem to be better adapting to the changing landscape that is college sports. 

If the PAC-12 wants to get ahead, the need to realign their goals and promote leaders who understand the business, not just those who want to enrich themselves. In a time when present results are lacking, and future promises seem more akin to lame platitudes, it can be hard to remain optimistic. Whether this low point will continue, or it is a cyclical occurrence for the conference, all we can do is hope for a better tomorrow. So I don’t know about you, but I am going to kick back, hunker down, and hope the conference soon rise to heights equal Bill Walton’s skills with the glockenspiel. 

Artist Spotlight: Kossisko

Over the course of the last decade and a half or so, hip hop music and video games have become curiously aligned. One of the most interesting things about this development is that companies don’t always choose popular artists music to feature in their games, they often choose the music of smaller artists that aren’t as well known. A great recent example of this is Berkeley, California singer Kossisko.

Rise in popularity  

Kossisko, then known as 100s, had his music featured in Rockstar Games smash hit Grand Theft Auto V. The song that made 100s well known is “Life of A Mack”, which is featured on in-game radio station Radio Los Santos. The game released in 2013 and brought a lot of attention to 100s career, leading fans to check out his debut mixtape Ice Cold Perm which was released in 2012. Following Ice Cold Perm, 100s released his EP Ivry in 2014 which incorporated heavy disco and g-funk sounds.

At the start of 2015, the 100s name was retired and he began to perform and release new music under the name Kossisko. The name change may not have elevated his career yet, but the music he has put out has become even more polished and quality.      

Why you should give him a chance

As I’ve began listening to Kossisko’s music again lately, I realized that there’s really no one else like him today in the mixed genre music scene. His old music as 100s is a nod to 90s-era gangsta rap and g-funk among other influences, and it is amazing in its own way. The new music he makes as Kossisko is certainly different, but not in a bad way at all.

His latest album Low, released in November 2018, is a fusion of funk, disco, pop, hip hop, and many other genres. According to Kossisko himself from a November 2018 interview with Hypebeast, the new project is “me as a person, with all my influences and everything. Now, I’m at the point where I’m like, “this is exactly what the f*ck I wanted to do.’”. It is truly a project that you need to give a listen if you want to hear something you aren’t likely to hear from many other artists. Each song is so different from the others, and it’s sure to keep you interested across the 34 minute run-time.

Notable songs

As I mentioned above, most of Kossisko’s music can’t be labeled as a specific genre. To present him fairly, I’ll be including different sounding tracks so that you can get a feel for what he brings to the table as an artist. Here are some of Kossisko’s standout tracks that you should definitely check out.

“Across The Room” – Kossisko

This track was the first one that I personally heard that was released under the Kossisko name. It sounds like it’s straight out of the 80’s, and that makes it so much better. If you think this song shows you everything you’ll hear from Kossisko, you’re wrong.

“SUPERFICIAL” – Kossisko

Up next is “SUPERFICIAL” from the album Low. This is one of Kossisko’s highest energy bangers and it’s certainly an ear worm. It contains pop and hip hop elements, along with some crazy vocals and rapping. It hasn’t left my regular rotation since I discovered it, and I wouldn’t be surprised if the same happened to you.

“SIDEWAYS” – Kossisko

This song contains a bit of R&B, which we haven’t received much of from Kossisko thus far. It’s more of a slow track at the beginning and picks up the tempo in the middle. It also contains beautiful sonic elements reminiscent once again of classic 80’s tracks.

“CARDIO” – Kossisko

We’ve finally reached “CARDIO”, my personal favorite Kossisko track. What makes this one so special is that it’s pretty much a three-for-one song. You get R&B, rap, and electronic influences all in one song. It’s super catchy and I wish I had discovered it earlier so as to put others onto it. It is also Kossisko’s most popular track yet under that name, reaching 1 million views on YouTube.

What’s next?

After listening to all of 100s/Kossisko’s music again, I’m not sure what direction he will go in on his next release. But whatever direction he goes in, my biggest hope for him is that the general public wakes up on his music and realizes what is right in front of them. This man is truly talented and needs the love and appreciation that he deserves because his music is stellar. He makes music for everyone and there is something for all types of music fans to enjoy.   

K-UTE Radio/University of Utah does not own any of the images in this piece.

Remembering Nipsey Hussle

I can’t believe that I’m actually writing this right now. The hip hop world has just lost another amazing young voice in Los Angeles rapper Nipsey Hussle. On March 31st, Hussle was shot outside of his Marathon Clothing store, the store he created to give back to his community. He was later pronounced dead at a nearby hospital. This is yet another huge loss that we’ve seen in the span of the last 2 years alone.

Making it out

Nipsey Hussle first jumped onto the scene in 2005 with and had become a mainstay since then. He was chosen as an XXL Magazine Freshman for their 2010 issue, which helped him become a bit more well-known. In 2010 he left his previous record label and began his own called All Money In.

2013 was a big year for Nip with the release of his critically acclaimed mixtape Crenshaw. The tape was hosted by DJ Drama and skyrocketed his career to a new level soon after it was released. Once he dropped that mixtape, he announced his debut album Victory Lap.

In 2018 after nearly 5 years of delays, Victory Lap was finally released. The project was a culmination of everything that Nip had achieved until that point in his career. It was his victory lap around all the haters that said he wouldn’t make it by doing it his way. Victory Lap is one of the best hip hop albums of 2018. It exemplifies what it means to make it out of the streets and put yourself into a better position while also giving back to your community in a major way.

Thoughts on Nipsey

I really cannot believe that this has happened yet again. Another young man has been killed by unknown assailants for an unknown reason. I don’t think that they understand how many lives they are touching by taking this man from us.

I discovered Nipsey Hussle when I was first getting into hip hop music about 8 years ago. My first exposure to him was his Crenshaw mixtape on DatPiff.com. I was instantly a fan due to the confidence he spit through the mic. He dropped Mailbox Money on New Year’s Eve 2014 and I listened to it right when it came out. It cemented Nipsey as one of my favorite west coast rappers.

When he announced that Victory Lap would actually be dropping for real this time in early 2018, I could hardly contain my excitement. The debut album that he’d been billing up as a classic was about to be released. It was finally time.

I can confidently say that Nipsey Hussle delivered on every promise he made about Victory Lap. It has all of the elements of his music that make him likeable in the first place, along with new stuff that made it even better. The project was so good that it even got a nomination for Best Rap Album at the 2019 Grammy Awards.

Losing Nipsey Hussle really is an incredibly terrible blow to the hip-hop community. He was a man that exemplified everything about actually living what he rapped about and making the boss moves to back it up. He did so much charitable work. He gave back to his community that it is sure to be felt for many years to come. I will never understand what motivates people to senselessly kill others, especially those that actively try to do good.

I’m sorry that this happened to you Nipsey. You didn’t deserve it. I hope that your family can find peace in the future after this crushing blow. Thank you for everything that you did for hip hop, I will always be a Nipsey Hussle fan. Your music will live on forever.   

Favorite songs

“Killer” – Nipsey Hussle ft. Drake

“Between Us” – Nipsey Hussle ft. K Camp

“Victory Lap” – Nipsey Hussle ft. Stacy Barthe

“Dedication” – Nipsey Hussle ft. Kendrick Lamar

“Real Big” – Nipsey Hussle ft. Marsha Ambrosius

K-UTE Radio/University of Utah does not own any of these images.

NAV releases new album, but something familiar is missing

After previously announcing his “retirement” from the rap game, Toronto artist Nav is back with his brand new album Bad Habits. The project comes on the heels of Nav’s 2018 release Reckless, which was received with mixed reviews from many critics and hip hop fans.

Album release

The rollout for this album has been quite different than his past projects, especially because of the rumblings of his “retirement” and the ongoing drama between Nav’s close friend Lil Uzi Vert and his label Atlantic Records. For those unaware, Lil Uzi Vert has been trying to release his long-anticipated new album Eternal Atake for almost a year now. Uzi has spoken of the behind-the-scenes trouble that he deals with in regards to his label, but now it seems to have gotten worse than it has been thus far.

The most confusing part about Lil Uzi Vert’s situation with his label is that they’ve actually begun to block him from appearing on other artist’s albums. This is exactly what has happened with the release of Nav’s new project. A collaboration between the two rappers called “Habits” was supposed to appear on the album, but didn’t because Uzi’s label bosses DJ Drama and Don Cannon wouldn’t clear Uzi’s verse.

Petty Instagram taunting

During the lead up to the album’s release, DJ Drama and Don Cannon even went as far to seemingly taunt both Nav and Lil Uzi Vert on Nav’s Instagram post detailing the situation.

In his response to the announcement of Nav’s album and Uzi’s feature not being included, DJ Drama seems to be ignoring the fact that he is one of the reasons that the track is being left off the project. You can see DJ Drama’s comment on the post below.

What’s the hold up?

Many fans have been very confused as to why Drama and Cannon won’t let their most popular and successful artist be featured on another artist’s song, especially because the feature could boost anticipation for Uzi’s new album to new heights. One theory that was created by fans is that Drama and Cannon are trying to spite Uzi after he dissed them on Twitter multiple times.

Past Nav and Lil Uzi Vert collaborations

Another reason that this situation is so discouraging is because whenever Nav and Uzi are on the same track, it is always a hit. Here are some of the past collabs from the two artists.

“Wanted You” – Nav ft. Lil Uzi Vert

“ASAP Ferg” – Nav & Metro Boomin’ ft. Lil Uzi Vert

“NAVUZIMETRO#PT2 – Nav & Metro Boomin’ ft. Lil Uzi Vert

What’s next?

Whatever the hold up is, I think hope that Drama and Cannon can stop being petty towards Uzi and allow him to feature on other artist’s tracks and drop his highly anticipated new album.     

A recap of K-UTE Radio’s Hip Hop Drip local talent showcase.

Hip Hop Drip: Voice of Salt Lake

Utah may have some unique cultural factors, but despite these the state still has a very strong, dedicated, and promising Hip Hop culture. During my time spent as a DJ and host at K-ute radio I have had the pleasure of interviewing and getting to know much of the local Hip Hop scene here in Utah on our rap segment, the Hip Hop Drip, that airs weekdays from 4-7 on Kuteradio.org.

Here at K-ute radio, it is our mission to give those that want a first shot at exposure and recognition the platform they need to have their music heard! This gives Artists the opportunity to promote themselves with an interview, play their music on air, and grow their following from our loyal listening base. In addition to this, we have begun holding regular K-UTE Radio presents shows, to showcase the talent that has come through our doors and to show them the love and respect they deserve!

K-Ute Presents

We held our second K-UTE Radio and The Hip Hop Drip Presents show at Kilby Court earlier this year and fans came out from every corner of Utah, in freezing temperatures, to turn up with us! We had an incredibly talented lineup of performers, most of which having dropped new projects within the last 6 months.

Getting Things Started

Our opener for the night, Undecided Music, gave us a taste of what is to come from them in the future. As one of the younger and less experienced acts of the night, they absolutely killed their set and were hopefully given the confidence they needed to keep making dope music!

This is when the 44 clique began showing up in droves to see their boy Koba perform songs off his latest project Dreams. This project is available for stream on SoundCloud under the FourFathers music page. Dee came out with some fresh out of the oven features which was a sweet surprise for the fans. Moving on in the night, big homie Pur2x showed up and showed out, performing tracks off of his debut EP Village Boy also available for stream on SoundCloud.

The Night Continues

The last three Artists to perform were the ones I was particularly excited for. I have personally interviewed them multiple times and I’m a big fan of their previous work. In addition to that, Lisa Frank, vinniecassius, and Adam Banx have been performing together at shows for sometime now. They’ve become the go to openers for big hip hop acts in the valley having worked with Kaskey, Rob Bank$, and Wifisfuneral in just the past few months.

Lisa Frank, took the stage by storm, opting out of an intermission, handing me a confetti canon instead to get his set popping off. He kept the crowd alive with the relentless energy of his music and interaction with the crowd. Keeping the vibe set by Lisa, vinniecassius performed his project Revenge Until Death that dropped only weeks before the event. Chockfull of high BPM bangers and trancelike melodies this project is certainly something you want to experience live someday.

Finally, a long time homie of mine and veteran of the Salt Lake City Hip Hop scene, Adam Banx took the stage as our headlining act. Arguably one of the most musically gifted artists in the scene right now, Adam writes all of his own music, composes a lot of his own beats, and engineers all of his projects for himself. He stays true to his unique style and doesn’t box himself into any specific genre. If you are into something a little more melodic, Adam Banx has definitely got what you want and plenty of it. He already has two complete projects, Illmedicine and Caution: Lanes Merge available on all major platforms, but also has the most amount of unreleased content and new material of any artist I have seen come through the station so far.

Whats next?

The night wrapped up around 10 o’clock and was a huge success for everyone including the station, myself, and the artists involved. By holding shows like this 2-3 times a year, K-ute Radio and the Hip Hop Drip hope to become a staple in the local music scene. As a go to source for promotions and opportunities we invite any artists looking to be heard to reach out to us and get an interview set up. Here at K-Ute Radio, the only thing we love more than music, are people who have a passion for music. We want to hear your story and help make your dreams a reality. Keep your eyes peeled for more live events and tune into Kuteradio.org for all of your favorite music and info regarding upcoming events and ticket giveaways.

I want to take this time to shout out all the performers and fans that came out and put shit down for local Hip Hop!

Show Review: Brasstracks, “The Vibrant Tour”

On March 7, 2019, I had the pleasure of seeing Brasstracks (@brasstracks) live at Metro Music Hall in Salt Lake City. Ivan Jackson and Conor Rayne, the primary duo, brought the artists Pell (@PELLYEAH) and Kemba (@Kembaland) along for the ride. The show was a fantasic and intimate display of instrumentals. It drew in the audience to create an experience that only a live show could.

The first thing to notice on stage was the setup. Conor and Ivan were on opposite sides of the stage, while their backup instruments were centered. Most notably, Ivan’s keys and Conors drums were facing each other, engaging the audience in their interaction. This setup allowed Brasstracks to bring you in, making you feel like a part of the performance. Ivan, on trumpet as well as keys that night, was very mobile onstage. He used his talents to make music while getting the crowd involved in hand waving and jumping.

Brasstracks’ focus on instruments lends itself well to live performance. Frequently, all instruments on stage would improvise solo performances that reminded me of jazz improvisation. With their hip-hop influence, the improv morphed into a lovely medley that gave new flavor to songs they covered, such as Drake’s “In My Feelings”, or the live-exclusive cover of Ghost Town DJs’ “My Boo”.

Of course, the original music was even more wonderful. The song “I’ll Sing About You” felt particularly emotional. Ivan shared how his inspiration came from dedicated fans and even sat down to play the opening minutes of the track. The sitting was so simple, yet made the music feel intensely personal and emotional. Ivan gave a peak into his heart with that song. “Vibrant”, with Pell on vocals, suited as the tour’s title track. Lighting on stage shifted to fit the shifts in the music perfectly. It was a treat for the eyes and ears, and I’m sad I’ll never see it quite the same way again.

Any member of the audience that night could tell you Brasstracks was having fun performing. Sure, they told you, but it was how they performed with animation and attacked every beat and note that constantly fed you the idea they were having fun. The small encouraged the connection between artist and audience. They traded energy with the audience. Brasstracks took everyone’s enjoyment and elevated it to elate and excite on new levels, making every motion of the lights, drums, keys and trumpets forever memorable.