Widmer Bros. "Perfect Playlist" (12/19/14)

Courtney Taylor-Taylor (Dandy Warhols)

Telegram "Follow"
The Upsidedown "Airplane Eyes"
Temples "Colours To Life"
Dark Horses "Alone"
Dandy Warhols "Easy"
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Snapshot of Passport Approved (12/19/14)

Port Isla "In The Long Run" (Norwich, England)
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Locations : Norwich


Widmer Bros. "Perfect Playlist" (12/18/14)


The Tallest Man On Earth "The Dreamer"
Grouplove "Hippie Hill"
Mumford & Sons "Babel"
The Head And The Heart "Down In The Valley Below"
Death Cab For Cutie "Monday Morning"
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Snapshot of Passport Approved (12/18/14)

Hello Saferide "I Was Jesus" (Stockholm, Sweden)
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Locations : Stockholm


Widmer Bros. "Perfect Playlist" (12/17/14)


Bob Dylan "Like A Rolling Stone"
White Stripes "There Is No Home For You Here"
The Guess Who "American Woman"
Sublime "Doin' Time"
The Black Keys "Gotta Get Away"
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Snapshot of Passport Approved (12/17/14)

Some Kind Of Wonderful "Reverse" (Cleveland/Germany)
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TV on the Radio :: Crystal Ballroom :: 12.11.12

December to Remember entered its ninth straight on Thursday with spirited performances by both Natasha Kmeto and TV on the Radio.

Local artist Natasha Kmeto is a little hard to pin down: she's a singer-songwriter; she's a producer; her voice will give you chills, but most music writers seem to have a hard time finding anyone to compare her with (the closest I can get is to say that she sounds a little bit like a cross between Erykah Badu and Amy Winehouse, but that doesn't quite do it justice). Armed only with a mic and mixer, Natasha gave a funky, emotional performance that included an impressive cover of Nine Inch Nail's "The Only Time."

It's been almost a decade since the first (and last) time I saw TV on the Radio. They were opening for Franz Ferdinand, and I have to admit that I didn't much care for them, back then. They were a little too weird for my tastes. (Mind you, I was there to see Franz Ferdinand, so maybe I just wasn't in the right frame of mind for an edgy, experimental band from Brooklyn.) But times and tastes change, and I was curious to see how the band would compare to the other Dec2Rem artists.

The reality is, they don't - there simply is no other band quite like TV on the Radio. From the opening instrumental interlude (which lasted for about 30 seconds before the band came on-stage) to their venue-shaking bass-heavy encore, TV on the Radio operates on a completely different level from most indie rock acts. Tunde Adebimpe and Kyp Malone sing with an unparalleled intensity and earnestness, and their fans are equally dedicated, following every song for over an hour and a half with rapt attention.

Is TV on the Radio still a little weird? Yeah, totally. But I'm into it, now.
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Spoon / Future Islands :: Crystal Ballroom :: 12.10.14

Thursday night's Dec2Rem show opened with a rather, erm, eye-opening set by A Giant Dog. I have witnessed many things over the course of December To Remember, but this is the first time in my memory that I've found myself asking "Uh, is the lead singer wearing any pants?" Despite their rather next-level name and outfit choices, the Austin band gave a solid opening performance, the lead singer sounding like a cross between Gwen Stefani and Patti Smith.

Future Islands and Spoon both played (on separate days) at MusicFest NW, this year, but as Future Islands singer Samuel T. Herring enthused, this is the first time they've ever shared a billing, together. For the band's opening set, Herring gave a one of his characteristically raw, soulful performances, with high-kicking dance moves, animalistic growls and howling refrains.

Exactly five years to the day from their last December To Remember appearance, Spoon returned to the stage at the Crystal Ballroom. Although their performance at MFNW was impressive, that show pales in comparison with what the band was able to do within the more intimate confines of the Crystal. Britt Daniel is a consummate showman, and he led the crowd through one hit after another for well over an hour (their four song encore was almost as long as some band's sets). We've been lucky to see Spoon twice, this year - but let's hope we don't have to wait another five years to see them at Dec2Rem, again!
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Fitz & The Tantrums :: Crystal Ballroom :: 12.09.14

Tuesday night brought a pair of December To Remember veterans to the Crystal Ballroom, as Dresses and Fitz & The Tantrums finished out a week of sold-out shows. While many of this year's local openers (including Dresses, who came back from an almost five-month hiatus to play the Crystal) were on the lineup last year, there were only two headliners from Dec2Rem 2013 that returned this year: Alt-J and Fitz & The Tantrums. That's testament to how popular these bands are: not only do they sell out two December To Remembers in a row, but they pack in the crowds during their mid-year shows, as well.

So how did this year's performance stack up against last year's - or their May show at the Roseland? Truth be told, all three performances were near-identical - there were no revelations here. For most bands, that would read as an indictment, but for Fitz & The Tantrums, that's praise, because when you're on the top of your game, there's really nowhere else to go. Michael Fitzpatrick and Noelle Scaggs hit all the high notes we've come to expect from them: a scorching opening with "Get Away" and "Don't Gotta Work It Out," their spot-on cover of The Eurythmics "Sweet Dreams," the typical stage banter, and a strong finish with "Moneygrabber" and "The Walker" - everything in its place.

Every year, millions of Americans re-watch movies like "It's A Wonderful Life" or "A Christmas Story", not necessarily because they expect the experience to be different, but because those are movies they love seeing. It's a December tradition. Well, for my money, I wouldn't mind seeing Fitz & The Tantrums become our own December To Remember tradition.
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People : Michael FitzpatrickNoelle Scaggs


Widmer Bros. "Perfect Playlist" (12/16/14)


The Runaways "Cherry Bomb"
No Doubt "Ex Girlfriend"
Feist "How Come You Never Go There?"
Smashing Pumpkins "An Ode To No One"
Lily Allen "The Fear"
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